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Researchers conclude, with the over abundance of solar insolation, Texas could be a self-sufficient solar energy producer for its own energy needs and as well as help other parts of the country.
In order to understand the ramifications of solar electricity, we should understand how solar electricity is produced. Solar electricity is generated from Photovoltaic (PV) technology. Photo means produced by light and voltaic means an electrical current produced by chemical reaction. The system begins with a single PV cell. PV cells are made of silicon which is a natural element that becomes electrically charged when exposed to sunlight.
A collection of parallel and series wired PV cells make up a solar module. A group of parallel and series wired solar modules make up a solar array. Below is an illustration of the PV cell as they become a solar array.
The ideal placement of a solar array is south facing at a tilt equal to the latitude, which is approximately 32 degrees in the North Texas area. A solar array requires 100 square feet of un-shaded area per each kilo-watt of solar panels. Below is an example of an array mounted on a patio cover.
Energy produced in the PV cells is consolidated into Direct Current (DC) energy which is a one way current. An inverter changes DC to Alternating Current (AC), two way current, which is sent to a distribution panel for use. The international standard for electricity is alternating current, therefore, nearly all common appliances use AC electricity.
Below is an illustration of a PV Solar System that converts direct sunlight into AC electricity for residential use.
Sunlight is easily captured and converted into electricity to aid in powering both homes and business’. Solar electricity not used can be exported to the electrical grid when the system is grid-tied. A grid-tie system is the combination of the public utility grid and a home solar system that allows the local retail electric provider to credit your account with unused electricity.
The PV Solar System at the Winston School on Royal Lane is an interesting example of solar electricity in Dallas. A commercial scale array of 58kW is located on top of the school. The array takes up approximately 6,600 square feet of roof space which is larger than an Olympic-sized swimming pool. Students receive valuable benefits from participating in this innovative project.
Other examples of solar electricity in Dallas include:
Traditional school and warning flashers replaced with solar powered versions
City owned buildings implementing solar energy recycling programs
Axium Solar in Plano, Texas offers installations and custom designs of solar electricity in Dallas and North Texas. Axium is an approved Oncor vendor who will work with you to qualify and achieve the Oncor PV rebate.
For more information about the Oncor solar rebate program, call Axium Solar at (972) 633-8680.
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