Rooftop Solar power: A bright and clean idea on your rooftop
Environmental preservation and climate control are some of the top agendas in a countries’ environmental policies. The increase in the use of renewable sources of energy and the reduction in the consumption of fossil fuels help said agendas. The most prominent sources of renewable energy are hydropower, wind and solar in that order. The fastest growing source being wind energy with the highest scope for growth being solar power. The government of India is targeting a 100GW capacity by the year 2022 with 40MW in rooftop solar installations. India has invested large sums of money and enacted schemes to enable people and businesses to invest in solar power plants.The simplest type of installation is the rooftop solar plant. As the name suggests, the panels are installed on the roof of the building. The ease of installation of rooftop solar plant is one of its selling points. The other advantage of rooftop solar plant is the amount of incident sunlight on the panels due to the placement. The rooftop solar plants are classified based on their connection to the grid.
They are classified as,
- On-Grid: the on-grid installations are ones which are actively connected to the grid. When the solar power plant cannot keep up with the load/power requirements, the building takes the required power through the grid. This connection is not effective in places where per unit costs are high or where power is not produced continuously on the grid.
- Off-grid: the off-grid installations are ones which are not connected to the grid and instead use batteries and/or diesel generators. The batteries are used to store surplus power and discharged when there is less power. The diesel generators might be added to produce AC and compensate for the limitations of DC from the batteries. They work in tandem to provide continuous power. When batteries and diesel generators are used together, the system is called a hybrid PV installation.
- Hybrid: The new entrant few years has both on-grid and off-grid features.
As the power need increase, the number of installations rise and the need for continuous power in urban areas results in an increase in on-grid or hybrid installations. The advantage of hybrid systems is that it tackles the problems posed by purely off grid installations. The batteries might discharge too soon and the life of the batteries can reduce due to the load.
The use of rooftop solar power plants is steadily increasing and thanks to government schemes, more and more people are investing in it for a better future. PV technology is improving and the returns on rooftop solar is on the rise. Therefore, rooftop solar is a bright and clean idea which can save you money just by having it on your roof.