Saturday, 7 August 2010

DIY solar panels

I've been keen to explore the urban myth that solar panels are currently far too expensive to install - with 'payback' time running in to years before set up costs are recuperated - plus, the commonly accepted notion that solar technology is currently insufficient enough to provide suitable power for a standard home. I wondered what the parameters were with regards the definition of 'not powerful enough' and 'standard home. Personally, I dont have a television, or an abundance of electrical appliances in my home, yet I have friends with various configurations of power need and consumption. So, I've decided to attempt the making of a solar panel and to go through the various stages of construction and integration, mostly as a learning exercise, but also in an attempt to reduce my own consumption and gain an awareness of actual power usage versus power generation! This is my attempt to 'build your own'. I'm sharing links and information as I find it, to aid any others who may want to attempt this.

This video from green power science is fairly interesting as a starter teaser, with information to follow up around the three main types of solar panels: Amorphous, Mono Crystal and Poly Crystal. Each having its own pros and cons.

The math (based on the poly crystal) which are approx 0.5 watt, so to charge a 12 volt battery, approx 36 of these panels need to be linked (soldered).

Another series of fantastic videos by mixcatcom on youtube part 1 and part 2 and part 3

More info
blocking diodes
solar cells kits in uk
tabbing tape + bus wire in uk
soldering iron