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Shining A Light On Solar PV

Did you know that the amount of solar energy that reaches the surface of the Earth is between 240 and 340 watts per square metre, depending where on the Earth you are, and in just one hour, enough sunlight reaches the Earth to supply all its energy needs for an entire year!It's therefore, not surprising that the renewable energy revolution is underway and the role to be played by today's trainee electricians, plumbers and construction personnel will be vital in ensuring that the UK is able to meet its own carbon emission reduction targets in the next two decades.What is Solar PV?A solar panel converts sunlight into electricity through a process known as the photovoltaic (PV) effect, based on semiconductor technology. The primary component of a solar photovoltaic cell is a semiconductor made of Silicon, the second most common Earth element.A semiconductor has the properties of an insulator, but when exposed to light or heat, is capable of conducting electricity. In order to generate solar electricity, the silicon used for the semiconductor needs to be treated by adding an additional chemical element to the silicon to create either a positively charged or negatively charged layer.A solar power cell consists of two layers of the treated silicon. The bottom layer is positively charged (P-type) and the top layer is negatively charged (N-type). The two layers form an electric field between them, which only allows the electrons to flow from the P-type silicon to the N-type silicon. When the solar power cell is part of an external circuit, this will allow it to generate solar electricity when light strikes the top silicon surface.Solar power panels are made up of groups of solar cells that are joined together inside a frame. An individual solar cell can convert sunlight into electricity, but it can only produce about 1-2 watts (W) of power. In order to generate useful amounts of solar power electricity for a home, several solar cells need to be joined together to form a solar panel.Being able to join solar cells together to obtain more power is one of the key benefits of a solar cell. You can combine multiple solar panels in order to generate more power. When you combine multiple solar panels together they form a solar array.Solar PV installer trainingThe installation of solar PV panels on the roofs of UK homes is now considered a major part of transforming how our energy is obtained and used, and no doubt a massive project which will provide employment for trained and qualified solar PV installers for the foreseeable future!AbleSkills Renewable Energy Centre has been carefully developed to provide solar PV courses up to level 2 and 3 training verification by accredited and experienced industry professional tuition for the required learning curriculums and hands-on practical skillsets approved by key national examining bodies, City & Guilds, BPEC and NICEIC.Entry level students coming to the subject for the first time can obtain the key basics and valuable insight on a 'primer' Renewable Energy Awareness course.No more a 'sunrise' industry, solar energy is here now and is the future. Any individual who is interested to become involved in renewable energy and is just starting out on a new career or indeed, an experienced tradeperson needing to catch up with understanding renewable technology, will require to thoroughly acquaint themselves with a sound knowledge foundation on solar courses.