Photovoltaics: Design and Installation

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Photovoltaics: Design and Installation

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by: Solar Energy International

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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 and 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).

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 and construction, solar hot water, wind and micro-hydro power, solar cooking, and natural house building.


Good for DIY, PV self study, and high school tech prep
This is the textbook SEI uses for its PV Design and Installation Workshop. It's also well-suited for DIYers who have some electrical experience, and students in high school tech prep-level courses. Readers without any technical background may benefit by taking a PV or circuits course concurrently. The math is limited to arithmetic, and there are many useful tables, graphs, diagrams, and exercises that substitute for algebra. The section titled "The Photovoltaic Reaction" on p. 48 isn't entirely accurate, but this material isn't needed to design and install the systems described in the manual.

After the first few pages I knew that this was a good reference. Being a DIY person I found that this book did an excellent job expaining the theory and gave examples of practical application. Things were explained in laymans terms and all aspects of materials to use and the installation process were covered. At the end of every chapter there are questions to test your understanding of the material. These questions can be easily adopted to designing your own system. If you are considering installing a system yourself make this the first book you buy.

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