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New Society Publishers
Photovoltaics: Design and Installation Manual

Photovoltaics: Design and Installation Manual

by Solar Energy International
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A comprehensive training resource for producing electric power from the sun.

Producing electricity from the sun using photovoltaic (PV) systems has become a major industry worldwide. But designing, installing and maintaining such systems requires knowledge and training, and there have been few easily accessible, comprehensive guides to the subject.

Now, with Photovoltaics: Design and Installation Manual , a world-class solar energy training and education provider—Solar Energy International (SEI)—has made available the critical information to successfully design, install and maintain PV systems. The book contains an overview of photovoltaic electricity and a detailed description of PV system components, including PV modules, batteries, controllers and inverters. It also includes chapters on sizing photovoltaic systems, analyzing sites and installing PV systems, as well as detailed appendices on PV system maintenance, troubleshooting and solar insolation data for over 300 sites around the world. Used worldwide as the textbook in SEI’s PV Design & Installation workshops, topics covered include:

  • The basics of solar electricity
  • PV applications and system components
  • Solar site analysis and mounting
  • Stand-alone and PV/generator hybrid system sizing
  • Utility-interactive PV systems
  • Component specification, system costs and economics
  • Case studies and safety issues

Photovoltaics guarantees that those wanting to learn the skills of tapping the sun’s energy can do so with confidence.

Solar Energy International (SEI) has the nonprofit mission to respond to the need for renewable energy education. Based in Carbondale, Colorado, and active around the world, SEI is a link between people and renewable energy resources, providing information, education and training to people who want to shape a sustainable future. SEI is recognized by the National Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) as dedicated independent provider of PV training programs that may be used toward attaining PV certification. Also, SEI is recognized as an Accredited Institution to offer PV training by the Institute for Sustainable Power (ISP).

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780865715202
Publisher: New Society Publishers
Publication date: 09/01/2004
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 365,823
Product dimensions: 8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 16 Years

About the Author

Solar Energy International (SEI), from Carbondale, CO, is a non-profit that trains adults and youth in renewable energy and environmental building technologies. Since 1991, SEI has taught thousands of individuals from 12 US states and around the world, pioneering a hands-on approach acknowledged as the benchmark for renewable energy education and training. SEI staff are avid solar enthusiasts with decades of experience in passive solar design & construction, solar hot water, wind and micro-hydro power, solar cooking, and natural house building.

Table of Contents

List of Figuresxiii
List of Tables and Worksheetsxv
Acknowledgments and Disclaimerxvi
Chapter 1An Overview of Photovoltaics
1.1The Development of Photovoltaics2
1.2Current and Emerging Opportunities2
1.3Advantages of Photovoltaic Technology3
1.4Disadvantages of Photovoltaic Technology3
1.5Environmental, Health, and Safety Issues3
1.6Photovoltaic System Components4
1.7Photovoltaic System Types4
Chapter 2Photovoltaic Electric Principles
2.2Matching Appliances to the System11
2.3Electrical Circuits11
2.4Series and Parallel Circuits in Power Sources12
2.5Series and Parallel Circuits in Electric Loads14
Series and Parallel Wiring Exercises15
Solutions to Wiring Exercises21
Chapter 3The Solar Resource
3.1Solar Radiation Fundamentals28
3.2Gathering Site Data32
3.3Completing the Solar Site Analysis33
Chapter 4Electric Load Analysis
4.1Using Energy Efficiently40
4.2Electrical Load Requirements40
4.3Calculating Load Estimates41
4.4Considerations for Calculating Load Estimates44
Chapter 5Photovoltaic Modules
5.1Photovoltaic Principles48
5.2Module Types49
5.3Module Performance49
5.4Factors of Module Performance50
5.5Photovoltaic Arrays53
5.6Mounting Photovoltaic Modules54
Chapter 6Batteries
6.1Battery Types and Operation60
6.2Battery Specifications62
6.3Battery Safety67
6.4Battery Sizing Exercise68
6.5Battery Wiring Configuration70
Chapter 7PV Controls
7.1Controller Types74
7.2Controller Features75
7.3Specifying a Controller76
7.4Controller Sizing Exercise77
Chapter 8Inverters
8.1Inverter Operating Principles80
8.2Inverter Features80
8.3Inverter Types81
8.4Specifying an Inverter82
Chapter 9Photovoltaic System Wiring
9.3Wire Size88
9.4Overcurrent Protection104
Chapter 10Sizing Photovoltaic Systems
10.1Introduction to Sizing PV Systems112
10.2Design Penalties112
10.3Sizing Worksheet113
10.4Sample System Exercise115
Chapter 11Utility-Interactive Systems
11.2Utility-Interactive Systems122
11.3System Sizing and Economics126
11.4Net Metering127
11.5Obtaining an Interconnection Agreement128
Chapter 12Integrating Photovoltaics into Buildings
12.2Retrofitted PV Systems134
12.3BIPV Options134
Chapter 13Photovoltaic System Applications
13.1Tools and Appliances140
13.3Water Pumping145
13.5Hybrid Systems with Generators150
Chapter 14Photovoltaic Installation
14.1Preparing for the Installation154
14.2Tools and Materials154
14.3Photovoltaic Array Installation157
14.4Battery Installation159
14.5Controller & Inverter Installation160
14.6Photovoltaic System Wiring161
14.7PV System Installations Final Checklist163
Chapter 15Maintenance and Troubleshooting
15.1Materials and Tools List168
15.2Maintaining PV Components168
15.3Maintaining Appliances169
15.4Troubleshooting Common System Faults170
15.5Troubleshooting Wiring Problems Using a Multimeter171
15.6Troubleshooting Specific Problems174
Chapter 16Safety and PV Installation
16.2Basic Safety180
16.4Safety Equipment183
16.5Site Safety184
16.6First Aid185
Appendix AGlossary189
Appendix BSolar Data199
Appendix CSun Charts273
Appendix DSystem Sizing Worksheets295
Resource Guide299

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