DIY Solar Power System

DIY Solar Power System – Part 1

DIY Solar Power System – Hello everyone, this short course is all about solar power, and I will be teaching you how to design your own solar power system. If you are hobbies, or someone who just wants to be white stuff, someone who wants to know more about solar power systems, or just wanted to know if he or she has made good day right equipment for a solar power center set up then this lecture series is for you.

DIY Solar Power System

Introduction to Solar Power System

These lecture series are divided into five parts, but one will be the introduction of the solar power system. In part two, we’ll talk about some different solar power system setups, such as one green grid, and hybrid systems. Part three, four, and five are the most important parts of these lectures of this lecture series.

  • Part 1. DIY Solar | Introduction to Solar Power System
  • Part 2. DIY Solar | Different Type Of Solar Power Setup (On-Grid, OFF-Grid, and Hybrid)
  • Part 3. DIY Solar | On-Grid System Design and Calculations
  • Part 4. DIY Solar | Off-Grid System Design and Calculations
  • Part 5. DIY Solar | Hybrid System Design and Calculations

We will do some calculations in order to design and build our own off-grid, and hybrid solar power systems, and we begin the solar power system basic design, and calculations part.

Introduction how much power is in the Sun

Well, according to UTIA’s website, the Sun releases an estimated 3,846 x 1026 power watts of energy. That is three eight four six followed by 23 zeros, 384,600,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 watts. So, compare that to a bulb, an incandescent bulb, it uses only 60 watts of power, max 400 watts. So, that’s quite a lot of power that’s in the Sun of the Earth’s surface. The solar energy density is approximately around 1,000 watts per square meter, so imagine this would be a heavy roof area of about 50 square meters and 4 hours of sun exposure.

Example: A 50 m2 roof area receives about 200,000 watts (200 kW) of energy for 4 hours of sun.

1,000 watts/m2 x 50 m2 x 4 hours = 200,000 watts (200 kWh)

The amount of energy received by your roof is around 200,000 watts or 200 kilowatts for an average household. This is already Cleveland to half of your monthly power consumption harvested in just a few hours but please know that in this example, we have not factored in the efficiency of our solar panels converting solar energy to electrical energy. The efficiency would be around 15% to 20%.

The world currently consumes around 15 terawatts of power. So, that’s around 15,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 watts have to put into perspective. One terawatt whatever one, you could want to do ten billion incandescent bulbs rate that value 100 watts each.

  • 1 Terawatt = 1,000 Gigawatts
  • 1 Gigawatt = 1,000 Megawatts
  • 1 Megawatt = 1,000 Kilowatts
  • 1 Kilowatt = 1,000 Watts

DIY Solar Power System

According to a study, done in 2017, crude oil is still the primary source of energy used by the world’s population, followed by coal, that’s the blue line, and call them natural gas, that’ll be the orange line, then followed by traditional biofuels, that’s one in red. The renewable energy sources are down; these are the wind power solar.

So, you can see that our renewable are still far behind traditional sources of power, so to have a clear view of the amount gap between the crude oil, and our solar power, food oil is this green line, solar would be this blue line.
You can really see the big gap here.

How big really is the potential of solar energy in solving the world’s energy problem? So, just look at this picture. The world energy consumption is the one in the middle at 16 terawatts. These 16 terawatts the wind power, but that’s all wind power it can provide around 25 to 70 terawatts of power. The solar on the other hand.

DIY Solar Power System

The traditional sources of power would be coal, uranium, oil, natural gas. These are not renewable traditional power. We can clearly see that solar power on the other hand will have the potential of producing around 23,000 terra watts of power. That’s really quite a huge amount, compared to the consumption of our consumption which is only 16 terawatts. So, why do we need to switch to solar?

DIY Solar Power System

Why do we need to switch to solar?

Well, number one, you can clearly see in the photo, solar power has the potential to meet and even exceed the world’s energy requirement. Number two, it is unlimited, as long as our sun is shining. Number three, it is safe. Number four, it’s clean energy. Number five, basically free, and number six, it doesn’t cost much to anything.

  1. Solar power has the potential to meet and even exceed the world’s energy requirements.
  2. It is unlimited, as long as our sun is shining.
  3. It is safe.
  4. It’s clean energy.
  5. It’s basically free.
  6. Low maintenance cost.

We have seen the advantages of using solar power. Now, we’ll see the disadvantages of using solar power.

The first thing is it has a high initial cost. Yes, you’ll probably spend a large sum of money for a new installation, but it will eventually pay you back slowly through the years. In the U.S. the average ROI or return on investment for a solar power system is around 8 years. But, we also would like to point out that the lifespan of a solar panel is around 20 years, with some reported to be still in operation after 30 years.

Number 2, solar power is dependent on the weather. So, there will be times when the sky is covered with clouds, and so the harvested solar power is decreased significantly. During wintertime, well there’s really not much Sun.

Number 3, solar energy storage is expensive. The lifespan of a battery is also short and will need to be replaced every three to five years that figure lead-acid batteries.

  1. High Initial Cost
  2. Weather Dependent
  3. Solar Energy Storage is Expensive


Advantages Solar PowerDisadvantages Solar Power
Solar power has the potential to meet and even exceed the world’s energy requirements.High Initial Cost
It is unlimited, as long as our sun is shining.Weather Dependent
It is safe.Solar Energy Storage is Expensive
It’s clean energy.
It’s basically free.
Low maintenance cost.

So, with the advancement of Technology of solar panels and batteries, we expect the price of building a solar power system to go down. Through the years, we have seen their prices fall, and they will still continue to fall in the future, as companies find ways to lower the cost of production, increase production efficiency, and discover new technologies.

How do solar panels convert solar energy to electrical energy?

DIY Solar Power SystemSimply, put it this way, let’s put this, but this way, when a photon a satellite knocks on an electron free, it creates enough potential to allow the electrons to flow. Thus a current is created. A solar panel is an assembly of photovoltaic cells that converts solar energy to electrical energy.

When a photon of sunlight knocks an electron free, the electric field will push that electron out of the silicon junction – current flows. There are basically two types of solar panels using home installations, the monocrystalline that’s the one on the left, the polycrystalline panels with the one on the right.

When a photon of sunlight knocks an electron free, the electric field will push that electron out of the silicon junction – current flows. There are basically two types of solar panels using home installations, the monocrystalline that’s the one on the left, the polycrystalline panels with the one on the right.

DIY Solar Power System

There are other types as well, such as thin-film, which we will not discuss. So, for some people, the monocrystalline panel is the panel of choices. It has higher efficiency which is around 15% to 20% compared to the polycrystalline panel which is in the range of 14 % to 16 %. Because of this, Damona panels are more expensive than poly panels, but due to the advancement in sauropod some solar panel technology, you can now see some poly panels, polycrystalline panels that can match the efficiency of the crystals.

Made from single crystal siliconMade from silicone fragments melted together
Darker color (Black)Lighter color (Bluish)
Efficiency which is around 15% to 20%Efficiency which is around 14% to 16%
Longer life span (25 years)Shorter life span


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And also one distinct difference between the mono and poly, crystal imbalances is that mono panels are darker in shade, some kind of black, and the polycrystalline panel is like some kind of bluish in color. In installing a solar power system, you do not just need a solar panel. We also need other equipment such as an inverter. The inverter converts the DC output of the solar panels to AC to be used by the common home appliances. We also have a solar charger and a battery bank.

DIY Solar Power System

The solar charger manages the charging of the battery bank. It controls the rate at which CD batteries are charged and prevents overcharging. The battery basically is just energy storage, and lastly, we will also need cables connectors, mounting brackets, breakers, and other safety devices such as surge protection devices.

So, that’s the end of the first part of this lecture series, and I hope that you have learned something. I hope to see in the next part we will discuss the different types of solar power setups such as off-grid and hybrid systems.

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Next: DIY Solar Power System – Part 2

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