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WHAT I WISH EVERYONE KNEW ABOUT SOLAR ENERGY

Unfortunately, you keep hearing the prejudice that solar energy is not worth it in this country. Solar systems in Africa, of course - but the sun would shine far too rarely here. But the truth is different: In fact, the sun in Australia provides more than enough energy for the profitable production of solar power that completely covers our needs.

Of course, the irradiated solar energy and the number of hours of sunshine in Central Australia are lower than in the Sahara. But the power of the sun should not be underestimated here either. According to the weather service, the sun shines here for around 1,300 - 1,900 hours a year . With a cloudless sky, the intensity of the radiation reaches an output of around 1,000 watts per square meter. In Australia, depending on the region and time of year,  solar energy this radiation output provides an amount of energy of 900 - 1,200 kWh per square meter and year, although it is higher in southern Australia and on the coasts than in the Ruhr area, for example. In principle, however, all regions in Australia are suitable for solar power generation, because solar radiation is easily enough to ensure economical and environmentally friendly power generation even with a small photovoltaic system.

Solar energy could supply the whole of Australia with electricity

Overall, the sun in Australia delivers an amount of energy every day that even exceeds the demand by 80 times. Experts estimate that the usable roof area in Australia is over 1,000 km² . Photovoltaic systems with an output of 120-130 gigawatts could be installed there. With their electricity production, one could cover the electricity needs of Australia households for almost a year.

In addition, photovoltaic modules not only use direct sunlight, which only occurs when the sky is clear. The so-called diffuse radiation from the clouds can also be used to generate energy. The brighter it is outside, the more power the modules produce - regardless of whether the sun can be seen directly or not.

By the way: Anyone who thinks that it is far too cold for solar energy in Australia is wrong. While more solar radiation leads to more electricity production, the opposite is true for temperature: solar modules produce electricity most effectively when it is sunny but cool . If it is too hot, the voltage of the solar cells decreases and the efficiency drops. The performance at 35 degrees air temperature is around 6% lower than at 20 degrees. The rather cool temperatures in Australia are actually beneficial for solar power production.

Solar energy is not worthwhile because the sun shines too little in Australia? There is a lot of misinformation and rumors about the energy potential of the sun - solar energy makes a lot more sense than some believe.

Anyone who thinks that solar systems can only produce electricity is wrong. With solar energy you can not only generate electricity in an environmentally friendly and inexpensive way, but also heat for heating and drinking water. For this you need a solar thermal system (also called a solar collector system). It converts solar energy into heat. This can be used, for example, for the preparation of warm (drinking) water, for heating rooms or swimming pools. Already today in Solingen almost the entire hot water requirement can be covered with solar thermal energy during the summer and part of the room heating energy during the heating season

There are still many funding and financing options for photovoltaic and electricity storage systems. Among other things, classic interest payment loans are offered by various banks and the KfW as well as an instant building loan with a subsequent building contract from some building societies. Basically: always obtain several offers from banks and building societies and check their conditions very carefully so that the investment can be paid off as cheaply as possible. If you would like to reduce the investment costs for your solar thermal system in an existing old building, we will support you with our “Klingen Plus” funding program .

The rumor that the fire brigade does not put out the fire on burning roofs on which a solar system is installed is not true! It is only correct that it is more demanding for the fire service to extinguish such a fire. Because the system is live as long as the sun is shining - including when extinguishing. A study by the TÜV, which I have already referred to in another blog article in this context recommends keeping the usual safety distance of one meter. It is also common for other live electrical systems. In addition, the fire brigade only extinguishes roof truss fires from the outside, because the increased roof load increases the risk that the roof could collapse. If you have a solar system on the roof and want to support the fire brigade with the work that will hopefully never be necessary, make sure that the lines of solar energy run outside the building or in fire-protected cable ducts and thus minimize risk. A good protective measure for the fire brigade is also a clearly visible marking in the entrance area of the building or in the house connection area.

The feed-in tariff for photovoltaic systems is regulated in the solar energy Sources Act (EEG) and is a form of financial support. If the self-generated solar power is fed into the grid, the system operator receives a fixed remuneration rate for every kilowatt hour of electricity for 20 years, depending on the output of their own PV system. In fact, the rates of remuneration have continuously decreased in recent years. However, self-consumption has become all the more an indirect source of income apart from solar subsidies, even if there is no longer any feed-in tariff for electricity that you use yourself. Because with self-generated electricity I can reduce my electricity consumption (currently around 26 cents per kilowatt hour). This saves you money on your electricity bill every month. If you need precise figures and information, you will find competent contact persons for everything to do with the installation and financing of a PV system under the keyword "Homemade" .

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