I'm sure you are through with the "Basics of the solar electricity" which explains the process of generation of current when sunlight falls on the semi-conductor material.
Now going ahead, this article deals with the different types of solar photo-voltaic systems matching your needs.
These different types of solar PV systems are coined on the basis of the individual's electricity needs, the back required when sun is not available, location, and of course the financial feasibility of the solar system.
Well, in order to use, consume, preserve and store energy from the solar panels we need other components like solar charge controller, inverter and the batteries for the back up, to make the required configuration.
Yes, the diode plays an important role for the smooth functioning of your solar PV system which I am not discussing in this article.
All or some of the above mentioned components are required depending upon the type of the solar PV systems.
There are 4 basic types of solar systems which are as follows:
(1) The Direct system
This is the simplest of all the solar electric systems.
It does not has the battery backup.
The PV array produces DC electricity which is converted into AC electricity through the Inverter and running the ac load.
This system produces electricity when the sun shines and stops when sun light is not available.
So, if you are a farmer and want to water your fields then this type system matches your need as you can run the motor using this configuration and can water crops.
You know watering is usually done in the morning and with the rise of the sun, the solar panels start producing current and your motor starts pumping water into the fields.
This configuration is suitable for locations with good sunlight.
(2) Off Grid system
The off grid system has a battery back attached to it.
The size of the PV array is generally kept large so that it can produce enough current for running the electrical appliances and charging batteries simultaneously.
During night or under bad weather conditions, the batteries act as a backup and provide current to run the appliances.
These types of system are best suited for remote locations where there is no grid supply like mountainous regions.
In hilly terrain, it very difficult, impractical and very cost to setup grid supply.
While on the other hand, the solar system can be easily customized and setup and is financially rewarding too.
(3) Grid Tied system with battery backup
This is similar to the off-grid system but it is also connected to the grid supply.
The benefit of this system is that you have 3 sources of power, namely:
In the night, the charged batteries take the lead and power the house.
In case, there is no sun and batteries are exhausted too then one can withdraw current from the grid supply.
With this kind of configuration, you are always sitting under running fan.
Moreover, if your solar power system is producing extra units then you can feed to the grid through net-metering and get compensated for those extra units.
This is best suited for the locations where the cost of the electricity from the grid supply is expensive and erratic and and for those whose electricity needs are more.
This system helps in saving units thus saving money.
(4) Grid tied system without battery backup
This system is almost similar to the direct system but it adds grid supply in its configuration.
One can easily switch between solar electricity and the grid electricity.
When there is no sunlight, one can switch to grid and can run the household appliances.
The net-metering feature can be implemented in this type of configuration and extra units produce can be fed to grid through this feature.
One can choose this configuration when the grid supply is regular but expensive.
Thus, making solar electricity comparatively cheaper than the grid electricity, resulting in more savings and hence better returns.
So, one can design solar PV systems as per one's requirement based on his/her electricity needs, budget, location and the feasibility of the solar roof in that location.
The efficiency of your solar roof depends on the quality of solar panels that (along with inverter and the solar charge controller) you are using while designing the required configuration.
The use of good quality solar components can significantly improve the payback period and the financial feasibility of your solar PV system.
Adding of batteries for the backup increases the setup cost of the your solar roof, therefore it is required that one must first calculate the feasibility of the solar roof before implementing it.