From the category archives:

Positioning solar PV panels

The heat wave sent spot market prices soaring: What does it mean for solar?

February 13, 2017
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Wholesale electricity prices on Australia’s eastern seaboard went through the roof this past weekend as homes as businesses pumped their air conditioners in an attempt to stave off the brutal and unprecedented summer heat. What are the implications of high spot prices for solar PV systems large and small in Australia? High temperatures –> high […]

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Is it okay to put my solar panels flat on my roof, or should they be tilted?

December 14, 2016
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Solar panel tilt angle and orientation are two of the most important factors in determining how much electricity your solar panel array will generate. If you live in Australia and have a grid-connected solar system, your solar panels will be installed at the angle and aspect of your roof. In most cases – provided you have […]

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Why even partial shading is bad for solar power systems

November 1, 2016
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Solar panels work best when there is no shade cast upon them. In fact, a shadow cast on even just part of one solar panel in your solar array can potentially compromise the output of the whole system. What are some strategies for dealing with potential shading of solar arrays? (This article was originally published […]

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East or West orientation for solar panels

July 3, 2016
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Determining the orientation and tilt angle of your solar power generation system is one of the most important considerations in designing your solar power system. As we have mentioned before, in the southern hemisphere, due North is usually the best orientation for panels. But not everyone has a perfectly oriented roof. When your two best options […]

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Renusol’s CS60: An innovative approach to solar panel mounting for flat surfaces

November 3, 2013
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Renusol GmbH is a leading innovator in the field of solar module mounting. The company and its US subsidiary Renusol America design and manufacture solutions for both ground-mounted and rooftop (flat or pitched) solar PV systems. Their aim, as Renusol America CEO Bart Leusink says, is “to make solar simpler every way we can”. This […]

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Australia’s largest tracker-equipped rooftop solar array goes online in Victoria

October 15, 2013
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Steel products manufacturer Hilton Manufacturing has commissioned a one-of-a-kind project on the roof of its factory in Dandenong South, outside Melbourne, Victoria. The commercial-scale solar array is unique in Australia and possibly in the southern hemisphere as well for its use of solar tracking technology. The 98.6kW system will generate approximately 40% more solar power […]

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Solar farm projects near airports: Is glare an issue?

September 19, 2013
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The Canberra Times recently published a piece about the concerns about potential glare from the solar panels of the proposed 4 megawatt (MW) Mount Majura Solar Farm, given its proximity to Canberra Airport. This article addresses concerns about glare from solar panels in aviation and examines a number of similar case studies both internationally and elsewhere in […]

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Solar inverter decibel levels: Do solar farms make noise?

September 4, 2013
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With the number of utility-scale solar installations and solar farms growing across Australia, it seems inevitable that concerns will be raised as this relatively new technology gains prominence in the country’s energy mix. Like any relatively large development, visual impact is an important consideration in the planning approval process, but there are some who might also […]

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Solar Choice PV Price Index – March 2013

March 4, 2013
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Previous Solar Choice Photovoltaic (PV) Price Indexes for 2013 reveal an industry in transition. Solar PV Prices in January were significantly more expensive than in December 2012, as a result of the early closure of the Solar Credit Scheme on 1 January 2013. The updated installer prices for February show an attempt to continue the downward price trend that […]

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Solar panel orientation: Taking a western view

September 24, 2012
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It is commonly accepted that the best orientation for solar PV in the southern hemisphere is to the north, but Adam McHugh, a lecturer in energy economics and energy policy at Murdoch University, has suggested if we want to make a real difference to our energy usage, we should be facing them westward. Recommend on Facebook Share on […]

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Solmetric’s Suneye 210: An on-site tool for estimating solar PV system performance

August 14, 2012
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Solmetric’s Suneye 210 is a comprehensive site evaluation tool for solar PV system design and installation. The Suneye 210 allows installers and designers to accurately predict a solar PV system’s performance, and to preemptively identify potential future shading issues as nearby trees grow or new buildings are constructed. Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet […]

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Solar Panels and trees: both share an affinity for the sun…

April 30, 2011
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The Solar Choice blog is full of good advice. We have written about how to orient your solar panels, how to determine what size system you’ll need, how much you might expect to earn or save through government solar power incentives (feed-in tariffs and RECs) with a solar PV system, and how to troubleshoot electricity production […]

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Flexible Thin-film Solar photovoltaics

April 13, 2011

In a previous Solar Choice blog entry, Prateek Chourdia wrote about some emerging trends in the future of photovoltaic solar technology, including thin-film solar power. This entry will summarise some of the salient points regarding thin-film technologies, otherwise known as flexible photovoltaics, and discuss their possible future direction. Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet […]

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How to install a solar panel mounting system on your roof

April 12, 2011
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For most people who decide to mount solar panels on their roof, a mounting system is necessary. This short entry explains the basics of what needs to be taken into consideration when putting a solar array on your roof. –Read about Solar Panel Tilt and Orientation in Australia– (Get a free comparison of solar quotes of the […]

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Solar-powered carports

April 7, 2011
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The number of small, simple ways to put solar power to use in daily life seems virtually endless, and opportunities present themselves at every corner. Solar carports are one innovative way to turn an ordinarily passive, mundane, everyday item into an electricity generation system that works for you. It’s the sort of thing that, when […]

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BIPV: Building-integrated Photovoltaics, the future of PV

April 1, 2011
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Building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) is exactly what the name indicates: solar power generation modules that are integrated directly into a building in the place of ordinary building materials. BIPV differs in a number of ways from the PV arrays that most of us are familiar with: the roof-mounted or rack-mounted PV arrays that are retrofitted onto […]

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Ground-screws for ground-mounted solar power systems

February 25, 2011
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Ground-mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) systems are ideal for those who have space to spare on their property. The are becoming increasingly common. In fact, there is a movement to recruit solar farmers, who, taking advantage of generous feed-in tariffs and solar rebate incentives, would be able to turn a profit from otherwise unproductive land. This […]

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Asbestos in my roof! Can I install solar panels?

February 24, 2011
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You are now mentally and financially prepared and willing to go ahead with a solar panel (photovoltaic) installation on the roof of your home. The only problem is, after having your potential installer come out and have a look at it, you’ve found out that your roof has got asbestos in it and your installer […]

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Own and Run a Solar Farm

February 4, 2011
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The image of a rural plot with a wind turbine producing electricity to be fed into the electricity grid with cattle milling about underneath grazing the grass has become a familiar one, but more and more rural Australian landholders are also making the choice to own and run solar farms. Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin […]

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Frequently Asked Questions!

August 5, 2010
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We get asked a lot of questions and sometimes the answers just remain on the page of the article and it is hard for others to keep track of them, so we have decided to summarize some of the key questions we have faced here is a summary of answers to frequently asked questions. Recommend […]

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Solar Panels on your roof and where else? (part two)

July 9, 2010
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Earlier in the week we looked at Solar Panels in the Transportation Industry, this time around we will take a look at other commercial scale concepts/ideas that take into consideration the advantages offered by the different types of solar cells (mono/multi/amorphous silicon). Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Print for later Tell […]

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Solar Panels on your roof and where else?

July 5, 2010
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This week we’ll take a brief look at the versatility of solar power and what people are doing with their photovoltaic panels. This first segment will take a look at public transportation and personal rapid transportation with respect to what’s being done in Australia! Recommend on Facebook Share on Linkedin Tweet about it Print for […]

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How does my Solar Energy Panel perform over time?

April 19, 2010
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Last week in “The Manufacturing and Science behind Solar Energy Panels” we talked about the different types of solar panels you could purchase and what all those complicated names meant. This week we shall focus on all the reasons why your cells might not be performing up to specification and whether its a temporary problem […]

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Solar trackers

January 21, 2010
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NB: Some of the information about Solar Feed-in Tariffs and return on investment in this article may be out of date. See our Solar Feed-in Tariffs page for up-to-date information on state-by-state programs. A good way to maximise the output of your solar PV system is to have it mounted on a solar tracker. Solar […]

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Ground mounted solar PV systems

January 13, 2010
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The majority of home solar installations are rooftop mounted panels. Roofs offer a practical and ready location to install solar cells on most occasions. But on some occasions the rooftop is just not suitable, or optimal. In this situation the alternative is to have your solar PV system mounted on the ground. This article will outline […]

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Solar Panel Tilt and Orientation in Australia

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Solar panels are installed differently based on their geographic locations throughout the world. The premise behind this is simple; the sun is in a different place in the sky, so panels need to be directed according to this positioning. The ideal situation is when the sun is hitting the panels at a perfectly perpendicular angle […]

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