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Basics

What is net metering? How to define solar radiation? What do PV industry professionals mean when they refer to grid parity? From definition of different terms such as peak load up to the understanding of true sine wave, this section covers solar energy basics. For some PV professionals the 101 solar energy basics may be already known. But hey! There's always something to learn. More solar energy basics will be added regularly. For any suggestions, leave us a comment below.

Articles in Basics

PAN Files
What is a PAN File? ...
Albedo
  ...
Bypass Diodes
How Do Bypass Diodes in PV Modules Work? ...
Solar Glazing
Solar Glazing-Concept and Advantages ...
Single Phase Versus Three Phase Power Supply
Introduction ...
Three phase power supply
Three phase power supply ...
Single Phase Power Supply
AC power supply has two categories namely single phase power supply and three...
Module Measurement without Load
Simple Module Measurement without load using a Multimeter ...
Module Measurement with Load
For this module measurement method we use the variable resistance to graph the...
Electroluminescence
What is Electroluminescence? ...
Dark IV Measurements
Solar cells convert light to electricity, so it might seem strange to measure...
Module Circuit Design
What is meant by Module Circuit Design? ...
Packing Density
What is the Packing Density of the solar module? ...
Mismatch Effects in Arrays
The Mismatch effects in arrays ...
Hot Spot
Hot spot heating happens in a string when there is one low current solar cell,...
Shading
Shading is a problem faced in the operation of all PV modules since the shading...
Module Materials
The majority of bulk silicon PV module materials include a top surface which is...
Thermal expansion and stresses
When designing a PV module,  several factors should be considered. It is...
Heat loss in PV modules
When it comes to  PV modules, there are several things one needs to consider....
Retroactive FIT
Retroactive FIT (Feed-in-Tariff) ...
Heat Generation in PV Modules
The dynamics of heat generation in PV modules ...
Lambertian Rear Reflectors
  ...
Optical Losses
During the design process of Solar cells, one of the main objectives is to...
Surface Texturing
Definition of the Surface Texturing ...
Intrinsic Carrier Concentration
Definition ...
Effect of Temperature
Effect of Temperature on Solar cells ...
Effect of Light Intensity
The change in the incident intensity on a solar cell causes change in all solar...
Shunt Resistance
Effects of Shunt Resistance ...
Series Resistance
Series Resistance (Rs) and its factors ...
Effect of Parasitic Resistances
Effect of Parasitic Resistances on Solar Cells ...
Open Circuit Voltage
Definition of Open Circuit Voltage ...
Short Circuit Current
Short circuit current is the current passing through a solar cell when voltage...
Light Generated Current
Solar cells produce electricity by generating current from incident light. Solar...
Photovoltaic effect
Definition ...
PN Junction Equations
Applying the Basic Equations to a PN Junction ...
PN Junction
Formation of PN Junction ...
PN Junctions Bias
  ...
Semiconductor Structure
Explanation of Semiconductor Structure ...
Absorption Depth
Absorption Depth Definition ...
Types of Recombination
Recombination Definition ...
Movement of Carriers in Semiconductors
Description of Movement of Carriers in Semiconductors ...
Equilibrium Carrier Concentration
Introduction ...
Absorption of Light
Absorption of Light explanation ...
Absorption Coefficient
What does Absorption Coefficient mean? ...
Photon Flux
Definition & Importance ...
What is Doping?
  ...
Conduction in Semiconductors
Semiconductors behavior ...
Declination Angle
Declination Angle Definition ...
Black body Radiation
Black body radiation definition ...
Azimuth
Definition ...
Elevation Angle
Elevation Angle and Zenith Angle ...
Solar Radiation on a Tilted Surface
Definition ...
Measurement of Solar Radiation
Importance of Solar Radiation Measurement ...
Energy of Photon
Definition ...
Properties of light
Light has different properties that need to be studied, but first we need to...
Calculation of Solar Insolation
What is Solar Insolation? ...
Location Factor for Wind and Solar
...
Energy Return on Energy Investment
Energy return on energy investment is a procedure where a particular amount of...
Greenhouse Gas Emission Reductions
What are the Greenhouse Gas emission reductions (GHG reduction) caused by solar...
Investment Tax Credit (ITC)
Business Energy Investment Tax Credit (ITC) ...
Why the West is Pushing Renewable Energy?
The Real Reason Why the West is Pushing Renewable Energy? ...
Renewable Sources:Good but Intermittence Causes Problems
A friend in need is a friend indeed! But what do you say about a friend which...
The Environmental Impact of Solar Energy
Greenhouse Gas Equivalent ...
Permitting, Interconnection, and Installation (PPI) for Solar Systems
Installation of solar generation systems is growing at a very fast pace for...
Modified Accelerated Cost Recovery System (MACRS)
Business activity is strongly affected by government policy as (well as clarity...
Balance of System (BOS): what is it?
What is Balance of Systems? ...
Levelized Cost of Electricity (LCOE)
There are multiple ways of generating electricity. You can generate from any of...
MC4 connector crimping tool: how to use?
A MC4 connector crimping tool or crimper is a very common tool used for creating...
How much sunlight do we get on earth?
”The sun keeps shining. Only, we earthlings turn our faces from it”, said a...
Dual Metering explained
Many governments are, in general, trying to encourage citizens to produce their...
Microfinance of solar systems
Solar energy: the Common Need ...
Solar energy history: an introduction
Use of solar energy on earth started when our great ancestors Adam and Eve...
Distributed solar power generation
Distributed solar actually means distributed generation of solar power. Solar...
Solar Power Purchase Agreement: 4 things you should know
What is a Solar Power Purchase Agreement (SPPA)?...
Greenhouse gases: how can solar energy reduce CO2?
What are Greenhouse gases? ...
Base Load and Peak Load: understanding both concepts
What are Base Load and Peak Load? ...
Fossil Fuels and its disadvantages compared to solar energy
Let’s face it: fossil fuels have been the major driver of human’s progress...
Ampere (AMPS) and solar energy systems
Ampere, often referred to as amps, is the SI unit of electrical current. ...
Solar Panel Array: what is it and common sizes?
A Solar Panel Array is a group of solar panels that are connected together,...
AC Power: what is it?
AC Power refers to Alternating Current power and refers to electrical power...
Difference Solar Radiation and Solar Insolation explained
Electromagnetic nature of solar radiation ...
True Sine Wave: definition & compared to modified sine wave
One way to define a Sine Wave is as a mathematical curve that describes a smooth...
Net Metering: how to sell you solar power to the grid
Net metering allows you to sell excess power produced by your solar system back...
Direct Current (DC) Power: definition and applications
Direct Current (DC) Power refers to the unidirectional flow of electrons and is...
Feed-In Tariff (FIT) in solar, advantages and how it works
Feed-in tariff (FIT) refers to an economic mechanism to promote the spread and...
Grid Parity: definition of the holy grail in solar energy
Grid parity refers to the point at which solar PV-generated electricity fed to...