Solar panel is a device assembled of photovoltaic cells that converts sunlight into electricity. When constructing solar panels developers need to assure that the cells are connected electrically to one another and to the rest of the system. Photovoltaic cells also need to be protected from moisture and mechanical damage because this can significantly damage efficiency of solar panel, decreasing its expected lifespan.
Solar panels usually have lifespan of 20+ years in which time the owner of solar panel should not experience a significant decrease in efficiency. However, even despite the recent technological advancements, most of today's commercial solar panels achieve efficiency of only 15% and this is certainly one of the main reasons why solar energy industry still cannot compete with fossil fuels. Commercial solar panels have very rarely passed beyond the efficiency of 20%.
Since our current home appliances run on alternating current (AC) solar panel needs to have solar power inverter that converts direct current (DC) from the solar cells to alternating current (AC).
The ideal position of solar panel is when faced directly to sunlight (to ensure maximum efficiency). Modern solar panels have good overheating protection in form of thermally conductive cement. The overheating protection is vital because solar panels convert less than 20% of available solar energy into electricity while the rest gets wasted as a heat, and without adequate overheating protection this heat could significantly decrease efficiency of solar panels.
Solar panels are very grateful in terms of maintenance because there are no moving parts. The only thing you have to worry about is to make sure to remove all items that may be blocking sunlight to your solar panel.
Why install solar panels instead of sticking with fossil fuels? The answer is simple - solar panels do not emit harmful greenhouse gas emissions like this is the case with burning of fossil fuels and therefore do not contribute to climate change. With solar panels you get clean energy from the most abundant source of energy available on our planet.
Why aren't people using more solar energy? Solar panels are still more expensive energy option than sticking with fossil fuels and there are still many people who aren't willing to pay more for energy, regardless whether this helps our environment or not.
The number of countries with favorable solar energy incentives is constantly increasing which means that solar panels are becoming more and more cost-effective and the number of interested homeowners and businesses grows all the time.