How Solar Panels Work

How do solar panels work

Solar panel technology (often referred to as Photovoltaics or PV) works by absorbing sunlight using a silicone cells mounted within an aluminium frame and encased with a glass sheet. When the sun shines on the solar panel it generates direct current (DC) energy, which is the same energy encased in a all batteries. There are 2 common types of solar being: monocrystalline and polycrystalline. Monocrystalline cells are the most popular form of panel in Australia because of their superior efficiency over their polycrystalline counterparts. When you put all your solar panels together in a row we call it a string of panels and this is how you start to generate large amounts of solar electricity.

Before the solar electricity enters your home or business it must be converted into alternating current (AC) energy with the help of inverter technology. The most common type of inverter is called a string inverter (or grid-tied inverter) and it is installed on the side of your home or business. The inverter takes all the DC energy from your solar panels and converts into the AC energy that is consumed in the house or the office. Here are the main steps for how solar panels work for your home:

The sun shines on your solar panels (photovoltaic cells) and they convert the sun’s energy into DC electricity;

A string of panels work together to push this DC electricity to a solar inverter;

The inverter converts DC electricity from your panels to AC electricity for consumption inside your house or business;

AC electricity flows through your home, powering all your electronic devices or charging a battery or electric car;

In Victoria, excess electricity produced by solar panels is fed to the electric grid for a small solar feed-in credit on your bill.