- Depending on the location and the kind of solar PV tracking being used, the current breakeven point is for systems sizes between 500 to 600 watts. The breakeven point is where the solar tracker system pay for itself and make the entire system economically positive. It will be more advantageous to use solar trackers than buying PV panels if one has six 75 watt solar panels being used with a solar PV tracker that tracks the sun from morning until night.
- Using solar trackers during summer where the panels can generate the most electricity can build electricity surplus, which may be sold to the utility in some cases that can be used to offset during winter time.
- The kind of tracker being used will depend on the location and the amount of sun received. In cold and windy places, a thermally operated system is not reliable because it is dependent on temperature to operate. Electronically operated systems are better in cold and windy places, as they do not depend on temperature capacity to move the panels.
- Solar trackers are very valuable investment as they increase solar panels’ efficiency from 25% to 40%.
Solar power basically refers to the process of converting sunlight into electricity. There are two ways to do this: photovoltaic (PV) or indirectly using concentrated solar power (CSP). Either of the two, the process aims at utilizing energy coming from the sun to boil water and then used this to provide power. While solar power technologies were already invented in 1860s, the popularity of coal and petroleum had stagnated what could have been the most important
Considerably, solar power is abundant and free. There is a need for countries that are blessed with year-round sunlight to tap into this opportunity of converting sunlight into solar power. Most African, Asian and Caribbean countries have limited national electricity grid coverage. The most isolated and remote areas thereby suffer due to their inability to access electricity. In Haiti, for instance, only 12.5% of the population have accessed to electricity, 25% of which is illegally connected. People living in non-grid areas depend on felling of trees to produce coal while others use wood as a fuel. This will not be sustainable unless they are planting trees to compensate what a household is using for a year. Put simply, this may jeopardize the environment.
What Haitians need is an access to alternative electricity sources to improve the quality of life of the people and make development a sustainable one. CSP makes use of mirrors with tracking systems, which is used to focus the sunlight onto a specified and small area. This concentrated sunlight is then utilized as heat source. There are different types of concentrating technologies like parabolic trough, dish Stirlings, concentrating linear and solar power tower. Peak temperatures and the optimal thermodynamic efficiency depend on which concentrators you will use. There is no best concentrator however because this will depend on the purpose and area which it will supply solar power.
PV, or photovoltaic, on the other hand, makes use of solar cells, which is used to create voltage upon exposure to direct sunlight. Solar cells can create electric current by converting the solar energy into an electron flow. Solar cells can thereby directly power different household items. Nevertheless, when more power is required, a series of solar cells that makes for solar panels is then created using electrical connections. These solar panels can be arranged into arrays to support the electrical needs of a household, for instance.
In summary, there are two solar power resources that can be made available for the Haitians. Haitians are currently suffering from inability to be serviced by electrical companies considering the limited output of the national electricity grid. Nevertheless, solar power can actually provide Haitians an easy access to electricity free of charge. This can be carried out through PV and CSP; which are both viable solar power applications.