Solar Panels VS The Cold
Welcome to the first post of our 4 part Winter Solar series! Each week we will be busting some myths about solar panels in the winter time. This week’s topic: How do solar panels perform in the cold?
Canada is known as the Great White North, and for good reason. We have long, cold ,dark and snowy winters for a large portion of the year. And in some cities, such as Ottawa, temperatures can drop down to -40 degrees Celsius or less! How do extreme temperatures like this affect the productivity of solar panels?
First, it is good to give a brief explanation of how solar panels work. Despite the fact that solar panels collect energy from the sun, it is not the heat from the sun that gets converted to electricity, it is the sun’s light (electromagnetic radiation). The temperature of the air does not affect the amount of electromagnetic radiation that hit the earth and so the amount of convertible energy is never reduced by cold air. In fact, just like most other types of machinery, solar panels actually work better, and therefore more efficiently, in cooler temperatures when compared to warmer temperatures.
When it comes to the cold, solar panels work just as well, if not better at converting sunlight into renewable energy for your home.
Tune in next week for part 2 of our Winter Solar series! We will be discussing how snowfall affects solar production. However, if you don’t want to wait until next week to learn more about solar in the winter time, we’ve got a great post about it here.
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