Photovoltaic (PV) systems can be divided in island systems and grid connected systems. If a PV system is supported by an additional energy source such as a wind turbine or diesel generator, it is called a photovoltaic hybrid system. Globally, most PV systems are connected to the main grid, however in Aruba, you can save money by generating your own electricity and store it in batteries for the evening.
Grid-Connected Solar Systems
For grid connected systems is Alternating Current (AC) feed in to the local electricity grid.The Direct current (DC) from the panel with an inverter into alternating current (AC).
A grid-connected PV system basically consists of the following components:
· Solar Panel Modules ;
· DC cabling ;
· Grid connected inverter (DC to AC Conversion) ;
· AC cabling ;
· Utility meter ;
· Meter box with food-distribution system and electrical connections;
· Communication & Monitoring of operational data ;
Island systems provide innovative solutions for areas remote from power grid or act as a backup supply, in case of unstable local area electricity networks.
An island system consists of the following main components:
· PV modules, usually parallel or series-parallel ;
· Charge Controller ;
· Battery or battery bank ;
· Inverter ;
In an island system delivers electricity to battery or directly to the user.
The batteries are used to store electricity and when there is no production of electricity, will the batteries supply the stored electricity to the load.
Some inverters like te Sunny Island has multiple tasks. These inverters are responsible for the stability of the island electrical network by keeping the voltage and frequency of the AC grid constantly within the allowable limits.
To charge and discharge a battery, a charge controller is used to prevent the that the battery life comes to an end prematurely.
In a few years, will the prices of the batteries drop dramatically, making it possible for most of the people who are interested and eager’s to produce electricity independently, will have the chance to invest in their own island PV-system
The main disadvantages are:
- High inicial costs;
- Regularly maintenance of your batteries;
Even though there are some disadvantages, you can still benefit from your system.
Solar energy was in the past and nowadays still used on mini-applications such as calculators, clocks, battery chargers, flashlights, solar radios, etc.
Other typical applications for island systems are:
• Solar panels for cars, campers, boats, etc.;
• Applications for garden and landscape architecture ;
• Solar water pump systems ;
• Solar street lights ;
Solar panel streetlights