RESIDENTIAL ROOFTOP SOLAR SOLUTIONS
In India, most people are accustomed to the power cuts. There isn’t any state in the country where people don’t experience power-cuts. The situation is worse in rural areas, where several hours of power-cut may be a daily story. Huge burden on the power grids results in power outages with even the big metropolitan cities facing power-cuts, especially during the summer months. Many households in India, recognizing solar power as a reliable and economically viable source of power, have installed solar rooftop system for home.
Why Residential Solar Rooftop System?
The biggest incentive for installing rooftop solar panels for home is the economic aspect. Solar energy has emerged as one of the most promising and widely accepted renewable energy source today. Residential solar solutions can provide free, uninterrupted electricity for the years together while at the same time contribute towards a greener environment. Residential solar rooftop systems are also easy to install and require minimal maintenance. The electricity produced in excess can be sold to the grid through net-metering facility directly impacting the existing electricity bills. With depleting fossil fuel reserves, accelerated environmental degradation and pressure on the power generation infrastructure, the government has taken various steps in form of subsidies to accelerate adoption of solar energy by providing residential solar solutions.
How to select the right Residential Solar Rooftop System
It is widely understood that solar power is the most viable and reliable way to reduce electricity costs and contribute to a sustainable environment. Homes with empty and unused rooftops that receive plenty of sunlight during the day provide an ideal location for installing a solar rooftop system for home. However, choosing the right solar plant for a residential house can be tricky, especially for people from a non-technical background. Listed below are some basic steps that can help make an informed decision about rooftop solar panels for home.
ASSESS THE SOLAR POTENTIAL
The solar energy potential of a particular roof primarily depends upon the following factors:
Potential generation at the location: Before installing a solar rooftop system for home, it is best to assess the potential generation capacity at the location. It is important to note that the higher number of sunny days, the higher the yield from the solar plant, thereby improving the break-even period and ROI.
Availability of shadow-free area: Another critical point to consider is the availability of shadow-free areas. When a shadow falls on a solar panel, it disrupts the electricity generation of that particular panel and affects the generation of the entire string. Shadow also creates hot spots, which can permanently damage a panel. Therefore, whether it is an RCC roof or a tin-shed roof, shadow-free area is vital for the optimum performance of a solar plant.
Orientation of the roof: The rooftop orientation plays a vital role in the power generation of a solar plant. In India, south-facing roof is an ideal orientation, as it enables the solar plant to receive the maximum amount of sunlight as the earth rotates, thereby improving plant yield.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT TYPE OF SOLAR PLANT
Residential solar plants are classified into On-grid, Off-grid, and Hybrid systems, each having its unique features, usage, and advantages. The selection of the type of solar plant depends on the intended use and prevailing electricity-grid conditions.:
On-grid systems: An on-grid solar system is integrated with the main grid supply, which ensures grid supply is used only when the solar system cannot supply the required power. Any excess energy produced can be exported to DISCOMs through net metering and earning revenues when production is higher than consumption. This kind of system is very cost-effective and enables substantial savings in electricity costs. This kind of system is ideal for locations with low power cuts and robust net-metering infrastructure and policies.
Off-grid systems: As the name suggests, an off-grid system is one that is not connected to the main grid. It is a stand-alone system that can run its batteries where the solar energy is stored. The solar power generated by the plant charges the batteries, which powers various applications in the house. Off-grid ystems make an ideal choice where grid supply is not present, or the supply is highly erratic with frequent breakdowns.
Hybrid systems: The hybrid system is a combination of on-grid and off-grid systems. This kind of system allows for energy storage in batteries and, at the same time, export excess power to the grid after the batteries are fully charged. While it seems like a win-win, it is advisable to undertake a thorough cost-benefit analysis, as hybrid systems are more expensive to install compared to the other two types of systems.
SYSTEM SIZING AND COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS
The maximum generation from a particular rooftop can be easily determined by sunlight and the space available. Space aside, the determining factor for a solar plant size is governed by the load requirement of the household. Ideally, a cost analysis should be done to determine the size of the installed system to fulfill the customer's energy needs while exporting excess energy for additional savings.
rooftop solutions in India offer a cost-effective and clean power solution growing in popularity by the day. Implementing an appropriate solar rooftop system with proper planning can result in substantial savings in electricity costs and access to green power for 25 years or more.
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