Today is a critical period in our history. The signs are all there: terrible typhoons, raging floods, and other bizarre weather changes all over the world.
In these present conditions, how to build solar panels is a skill worthwhile learning. It may be only a drop in the ocean, but you could consider it as your contribution to help save the Earth.
But first, what are solar panels and how does building one be beneficial to the Earth?
Basically, a solar panel is one of those strange contraptions you see sometimes in houses you pass by in the highway – a black, rectangular something that sticks out of some roof, leaving you to wonder what it does.
Solar panels are simple devices that capture solar energy from the sun and transform it directly into electricity. This electricity is then used for running electrical appliance or the whole household’s electrical needs.
A solar panel is basically composed of a collection of solar cells. These solar cells are the ones that actually capture the sun’s energy and turn it to electricity. (As a matter of fact, we even now get all our energy from the sun, although indirectly so.)
The electricity produced by these panels is directed to a battery, which serves as the power storage device. This stored electricity is then used mostly at night when there is no sun, or on cloudy or rainy days.
The electricity produced by a single solar cell is so small so scientists decided to create an array of solar cells and make them into a solar panel. This way, the electric current becomes large enough to be useful, being able to run an electric appliance or appliances.
Because the energy of the sun is free, it follows that the electricity is also free. Or so pne would think. However, as of this writing, not too many people have installed their own solar panels.
The biggest reason is the high cost of buying one.
Since the technology is new, solar panels made by big companies have price tags running more than $15,000. Some reasonably priced models, under $1000, are still not moving fast because they are still out of reach for the average wage-earner.
These days of the Internet, however, new developments are popping out now and then. People who know how to assemble things have discovered that there are some do-it-yourself models of solar panels that can be built for as low as $200.
Building Your Own
If you know of them, have you considered building your own solar panels?
Today, all the components needed to build your own solar panel are available in most kits. These components include the solar cells themselves, soldering iron, solder, flux, tabbing, etc.
What makes it better is the inclusion of detailed instructions on how to make solar panels. All one has to do is to follow the step-by-step instructions, sometimes complete with a how-to-do-it video. On the instance that you have to clear up some questions on your mind, you can visit their sites on the Net and join web forums and consult with others who have previous experiences with building solar panels.
Benefits and Advantages
The most visible benefit of building your own solar panel is of course the savings you will enjoy in the lower costs of your energy bills. And, if you decide to make your whole household energy self-reliant, simply build yourself the appropriate number of additional panels.
An added benefit is the new energy law passed by the U.S. government in August 2005 which allows a tax credit of 30% of the solar panel system’s cost with a maximum of $2,000. (You can consult a tax expert on how to enjoy this privilege.)
Another advantage of building and installing a solar panel is that they are eco-friendly, and help save the planet from additional emissions of pollutants. You are going to use the cleanest of energy sources, the sun.
Today, it has become easier than ever to build your own solar panel with all the kits and methods available. These kits have instructional videos and guides designed for any layman.
Building your own solar panel is one small start into a promising future of clean energy, clean atmosphere, and a clean green planet minus the pollution.