Homemade Solar Power System
Are you looking to build your own homemade solar power system? There are enormous benefits both financially and environmentally for converting to alternative sources of energy. The environmental benefit are very real. Solar power is a clean renewable source of energy that does not emit carbon the way that natural gas, coal, and oil do. Over the 30 year lifetime of the average 10kW solar array it saves the equivalent amount of carbon as planting 1450 trees.
One of the most important factors is to purchase high quality materials to begin with. To build a homemade solar power system you need the following materials; 36 whole monocrystalline cells, copper tabbing wire, flux pen or heat resistant adhesive, blocking diode, electrical jack, solder, and the materials to build your enclosure.
Once you have the materials at hand, we can begin to build our box.
1. Lay the 36 solar cells out on the plywood. This will give you an accurate representation of the size of the solar array so you can start thinking about the size of the box.
2. Next, start soldering the solar cells to each other by connecting the tabbing wire to the soldering points on the solar cell. Go from left to right beginning at the top left. The solar cells are extremely fragile so be careful how you handle them. The are as brittle as thin glass. You may want to consider purchasing a couple of extra solar cells in case a couple break. Make sure that you have enough tabbing wire left to connect to the blocking diode and electrical jack.
3. Using a voltmeter, test the solar array. Make sure that the output is equivalent to that indicated. For 36 monocrystalline cells each transmitting 0.5V, you should get around 18V of current.
4. Dab the backs of each cell with the flux pen so that you can attach the pegboard to it. Place the pegboard on top of the cells and wait a couple of minutes so that the solar cells attach themselves to the pegboard. Then flip the entire setup over so that the solar cells are facing upward.
5. Cut off the excess pegboard.
That's all there is to it! The next step is to build the box.
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