When you design an off-grid solar street lighting system, you will need to factor in the peak sun hours of the location in which maximum energy can be experienced for the solar system. However, if you aren’t a PV technician, then it is important for you to understand the peak sun hours and factor them. This guide will help you do just that, so let’s start.
What is Peak Sun Hours?
Firstly, you need to understand PSH, in simple words; it is the number of hours during the day when you experience the maximum radiation of the sun. The value of peak sun hours depends on the location of the solar system. There is a lot more to the definition which you need to understand. Normally, the average radiation from the sun is measured on the surface of the earth on a clear noon and is about 1000W/m2.
The number of hours within a day in which a location experiences the value of radiation is what is known as peak sun hours. Based on the location of the solar system, certain factors need to be considered which impact the peak sun hours’ value.
- Exact Position Relative to the Sun
As we all know that regions which are much closer to the equator experience intense radiation from the sun as compared to regions which are far away from the equator. Therefore, it can be concluded that a nearer the solar system is to the equator, the more the value of peak sun hours would be. Hence, if you install the solar power system near the equator, you would have much more energy and vice versa.
- The Level of Cloudiness
Clouds that are present in the atmosphere diffuse solar radiation, and this leads to a reduction in the peak sun hours. It is more of a daily factor which needs to be taken into account. Clear days would have more peak sun hours and rainy or cloud days would have less of the peak sun hours.
During different seasons, the peak sun hour’s value would reduce due to the location of the sun during the season. As a rule of thumb, there would be much more peak sun hours during the summer as compared to the winter.
When you know the peak sun hours of the solar power system, it helps you install the right solar power system as you would be able to estimate the energy which the system would be able to produce.
Essential for the Solar System
The PSH is vital for the solar power system to work effectively. It is a bit difficult to calculate the peak sun hours. However, it isn’t entirely impossible. You can also use the internet to find the peak sun hours for certain locations which will help you calculate the total peak sun hours in a period. The solar power systems of today are being built to provide maximum energy.