What is Solar Radiation?
Solar power is generated by using the solar radiation from the Sun. Solar radiation refers to light – also known as electromagnetic radiation – that is emitted by the sun. While every location on Earth receives some sunlight over a year, the amount of solar radiation that reaches any one spot on the Earth’s surface varies. Solar technologies like solar panels that have been developed over the years capture this radiation and turn it into useful forms of energy which can be used to power your homes and provide a freedom from relying on the grid for all your energy needs.
Factors that influence solar production
All of the sunlight that reaches a solar cell on a solar panel is not able to get converted into electricity. There are multiple factors that influence the solar cell’s ability to convert all the sunlight it receives. The installation of the photovoltaic modules must take into account some factors to take full advantage of solar radiation. Some of the factors that you must consider when making the decision to install a solar power system on the roof of your home or business are –
- The orientation
- The inclination
- The latitude of the place
- The climatic conditions
The correct consideration of these variants will help ensure that they produce maximum energy by being exposed to the greatest intensity of solar radiation for the longest period of time.
It is highly necessary to consider these factors to make sure your roof has ideal conditions for an efficiently functioning solar power system. By ensuring that your roof meets these required conditions, you are guaranteed that the solar panels you finally install on your roof are being exposed to the greatest intensity of solar radiation for the longest period of time. Solar PV panels are very sensitive to solar shadings. Total or partial shading conditions have a significant impact on the capability of delivering energy and may result in lower output and power losses.
Two of the most crucial factors to keep in mind when transitioning to solar power is the orientation of your roof and the angle at which your roof is inclined to ensure that installing solar panels will yield maximum benefits.
• Solar panel orientation
It is essential to know the solar irradiation in the plane corresponding to the installation and the solar path on the roof at different times of the year in order to calculate how much energy production can be expected from the installation of a solar power system on the roof of your home or business.
The performance of photovoltaic panels is influenced by their orientation and tilt (inclination), which affects the amount of producible energy.
The orientation of the photovoltaic module is the angle of deviation from the geographical south of a surface or north in the southern hemisphere. Maximum deviations of +/- 20 degrees are permissible. In the northern hemisphere, the general rule for the placement of solar panels is that they must be oriented towards the true south and in the southern hemisphere, the general rule for the placement of solar panels is that they must be oriented towards the true north so that they can receive as much as possible direct radiation throughout the day. Therefore, in Australia the most ideal location for the installation of solar panels is a north facing roof.
• Solar panel inclination
The climatic condition and geographical location of the solar panels also play an important role in choosing the right tilt angle to maximise energy production.
Solar radiation on a surface perpendicular to the direction of the propagation of solar radiation is always greater than if we place the same surface in any other position. The inclination takes into account the position of the sun during the year, so its optimal position may vary over time. Therefore, for the installation of fixed solar panel systems, an inclination value is usually chosen for the maximum average power received annually.
For maximum conversion of light into solar electricity, solar panels must be mounted at an angle to point directly at the sun. On trackers and depending on how the panel is mounted, it can be kept at a permanent angle or adjusted throughout the year to maximize solar energy from the sun. For roofs that have a pitch of less than 20 degrees, it is recommended to install panels with tilt frames to maximise sun exposure and consequently to maximise solar production.
Contact Austra Solar today for a free quote on a solar power system for you today and let our experts guide you towards the perfect panel orientation which will work best for your roof!