While the different photovoltaic systems operate on the same principle, they have a different configuration. There are two basic types: one is connected to the existing electrical network and the other is a stand-alone independent system.
On The Grid
Photovoltaic systems connected to the existing network are designed to match traditional gas, coal, and oil-fired power plants. This requires a converter because the photovoltaic panels produce direct current, and the electricity grid run on alternating current.
When it comes to adding CPV (concentrated photovoltaic) solar power systems into an inverter, the commercial grid or electric cooling unit (PCU) is required to convert DC to AC.
The device also regulates the flow of electricity from the photovoltaic array to the network and vice versa.
Off The Grid
A standalone system is a type you might use for your own home, even though other sources – including wind, engine-driven generator or even a local network – usually required.
In addition, the self-contained system operates only during the day, which means it requires some kind of storage device.
Beyond this, a standalone photovoltaic system is most useful to run the air conditioner, fans, and pumps for the solar hot water heater.
As technology advances and costs continue to decline, it is likely that we will see an increase in the implementation of solar energy throughout the world.