Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Solar Power order placed

I signed up with http://www.solarcity.com for 4.5Kw of thin film panels (60 of them). Their web site is slick, walks you through the install process, they have online monitoring of the output of the solar array and I also added the option of monitoring the house's consumption of electricity, which is integrated into the same web based monitoring and graphing package. They visit later this week to do the engineering assessment, then I get plans (provided online) and planning approval etc. follows. Should be all done in 2-3 months.

Thin film is better in partial light, and high temperatures, and it can be mounted closer to the roof tiles since it doesn't need an air gap underneath to cool it. We have a hot microclimate with no shade, at 2400ft altitude, above the morning mist most of the time, so the longer power delivery period per day should compensate for the slight reduction in peak efficiency compared to silicon. Solarcity offered both at the same price. There is a combination of a rebate and a tax credit at the moment. The tax credit is about 30% of the cost, and was added recently by Obama's stimulus package.

As it progresses I will post pictures and updates.

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