So what exactly are solar panels? And how can you make your own?
Solar panels (the ones utilizing photovoltaic cells) are large panels used to convert the sun's rays to electricity. This is not only the cheapest way to obtain electricity, it's also the most eco-friendly way there is! There are two main types, namely the solar water heating panels and the solar electricity cells.
A) The solar water heating panels
The solar water heating panels are used to heat water that is used in the homesteads; it is also used to heat water for swimming pools or generally to heat water for other purposes. These panels don't require the photovoltaic cells, but they also cannot store energy for later use.
B) The solar panels (Photovoltaic)
Unlike the solar water heating panels, the photovoltaic solar panels are used to generate electricity. They sometimes have battery supplies attached to them and can be used to store energy, as well as power just about anything conventional electricity powers today. Solar power has previously been common in areas so desolate other forms of electricity weren't available, or the infrastructure simply wasn't there. With the new leaps forwards we've taken in technology in reference to solar energy, we're now able to make solar panels affordable for the average consumer.
First you need to prepare the provisions that'll be used. Below is a list of materials you will need:
Cotton cloth, Silicon caulk, Respirator, Caulk & Soldering gun, Gloves, Solder, Multimeter, UV protective paint, Flux pen & paste, Knife, Paint brush, Screwdriver, Saw, Thirty six solar cells, blocking diode, Wires, UV protective clear panel cover, Stainless steel screw, wood.
Steps in Making Solar Panels
1. First, test out the panels in order to determine how much voltage the cells can handle.
2. Use the calculations of the height and width of the solar panel to choose from either the 4 by 9/the by 12 form of layout. But be sure to leave some allowance for expansion.
3. Attach four side walls to the wood board for the solar cells to be placed.
4. Once the cells have been placed inside the wood, it is to be painted using the UV protective paint for durability of the panel.
5. After that, you now wire the solar cells using the solder. Apply it to the tab ribbon which will then be connected using the solder to the electrode that is at the back.
6. Last but not least, identify the location the solar panel is to be placed and using the back of the solar panel, attach it to the substrate. Place the substrate inside the wooden box then seal it by screwing. Attach two wires, used for the flowing out of power, that'll represent negative and positive and place a blocking diode at the rear of the positive wire to stop power from flowing back.
You can use the UV protective clear panel cover to prevent the panel from destruction. Also check for holes that might give water access to the panel and cover them using the silicone caulk.
Note: Put your solar cells on a surface that's soft if you ever want your solar cells facing south.
These are the basic steps to building your very own solar panel to start generating electricity! This is merely a quick guide, there are much more detailed video tutorials online that can get you up and going much quicker.