When thinking about the solar power the first thing that comes to mind may be, solar panels, but that was the wave of the past. The new thing in solar energy is solar shingles. Solar Shingles look just like regular asphalt shingles but have the ability to produce solar electricity.
The solar shingles come in many different shapes and sizes. When searching for solar shingles you will notice that they come in many different patterns as well. They resemble the conventional shingles that you would find on roofs, but have a semi-rigid pattern covering, are thicker, and contain silicon solar cells that produce the energy.
With the technology in the industry evolving, they have also developed solar shingles that are thinner and even have the flexibility as your standard asphalt shingle, but are more expensive at this time. Each shingle is able to produce 100 watts of DC rated power.
Solar shingles use the photovoltaic models to trap sunlight and convert that power into electricity. The shingle does produce direct current (DC) power and typically, houses and buildings are using alternating current (AC.). To take advantage of the solar power from the shingles an inverter is installed at the site and converts the power from DC to AC. Homes with the solar shingles installed will look a little different, the shingles will have a purple-blue, purplish, or deep black color. Often homeowners will choose the solar shingle over the panels because they blend in with the roof rather than having panels attached.
The technology used for solar shingles is also the same technology that is utilized in solar panels. The sun is the source of the power and is used to create electricity. The shingles are made up with photovoltaic cells. The cells are made with a material known as a semiconductor. This material is a dense matter that conducts between an insulator and most metals. This process is completed with adding an impurity or the heat from the sunlight. The light is captured in the silicon semiconductor and energy is created. The energy is then captured in the photovoltaic cells and creates the current known as the alternating current (AC.) This alternating current (AC) then be converted into direct current (DC) and the process is complete. Solar energy is becoming more and more readily used and thought about when building and restoring home or buildings. The technology has evolved over the years and the awareness of the use of resources on our planet has made the industry very progressive. The shingles are also easy to install because they are attached right to the roof and do not need to be attached to the rafters as the standard panels do. (more…)