CGE has installed numerous solar PV installations for our customers but, being an energy efficiency company, it made a lot of sense for us to practice what we preach by installing a system on our own building.
The system consist of two arrays with each array having 44, 225 Watt solar PV panels. The DC output from each array is fed into a 10 kW inverter made by Fronius USA.
The total system has a generating capacity of 19,800 Watts.
Solar PV installations are the perfect compliment to our WIND•e20 wind turbine. Solar provides power when the wind is calm and wind provides power when the sun isn't shining.
Solar modules convert the suns energy to DC (direct current) electricity. An inverter converts the DC electricity to "household" AC (alternating current) electricity, the AC electricity is then fed into the electrical system of the building. That AC electricity is either immediately consumed or exported to the grid to be "stored" for future use.
Some systems use batteries to store electricity, typically if the location is remote or if the owner prefers to be independent of the utility grid. This is called an "off-grid" system and works in basically the same way except for where the energy is stored.