There are two main types of solar energy technology: photovoltaics (PV) and solar thermal. Solar PV is the rooftop solar you see on homes and businesses - it produces electricity from solar energy directly. Solar thermal technologies use the sun's energy to generate heat; electricity is a product of that.
The process of photovoltaic (PV) solar plants construction is a complex endeavour involving considerable amounts of time, money, and expertise.
Building a PV solar plant is broken down into several stages:
- Identifying the location
- Determining the grid connection point
- Pre-construction documentation & negotiations
- Clearing of obstructions
- Flattening the foundation
- Infrastructure (roads, fence, security)
- Purchase of equipment & logistics
- Mounting of the supporting structures
- Solar panels and inverters installation & connection
- Setting up the transformer substation
- Connection to the grid
- Monitoring system setup
Wind generators and solar panels can hook up together through the same wiring system. You need to do some research and purchase a controller that is capable of handling both systems. The setup is relatively straightforward and will vary slightly based on the individual energy systems you are using.
On average, a 5-megawatt community solar farm will have 12,000 panels, though that number can vary depending on the size and wattage of the panels. That means it typically takes between 12 and 15 days to get all the panels in place. Overall construction typically takes 4-6 months.
"It is sunlight in a modified form that turns all the windmills and water wheels and the machinery they drive. The energy derived from coal and petroleum (fossil sunlight) propels our steam and gas engines, locomotives and automobiles. Food is simply sunlight in cold storage.
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