Solar Photovoltaic (PV)
Solar electricity systems capture the sun’s energy using photovoltaic (PV) cells. The cells convert the sunlight into electricity, which can be used to run household appliances and lighting.
Do I need a south-facing roof?
A shade-free, south-facing roof is best but 45º off’ south (eg. S-by-SW or S-by-SE) will only result in a 4% loss in potential energy. The best slope is between 25 and 40 degrees.
Will I need planning permission?
Not unless you live in a listed building or a specially designated area of conservation. Keep the panel away from the edges/roof line and you should be fine (check with us or the Highland Council Planning Department if you need more information).
Does the PV system have to go on the roof?
No. If you put your panels up in your garden you can still get full FiTs payment as long as the power goes into the house like a roof-mounted system. However, such a system requires Planning Permision if it exceeds 9m2.
What might a typical system cost ?
The average domestic solar PV system is 4kWp and costs £5,000 – 8,000 (including VAT at 5 per cent).
What is the FiT rate for solar PV?
For current FiT rates, please visit here
Do we get enough sun in Lochaber
It would seem that we do. This is clearly shown in the map adjacent. We can expect around 700kWh per square metre annually, about the same as the scottish borders or the north of England.
Here at LEG we are putting together a data set of actual generation amounts from PV systems around Lochaber. Current results show that for every kWp, Lochaber systems are generating between 660 and 830kW. In other words if you had a 4kWp system you could generate 2640-3320kW per year. Earning you approx £354-£445 in FiTs.
There are also websites available that estimate your generating capacity for you- http://www.solarguide.co.uk/solar-pv-calculator
Which PV panels/brands are the best?
This is never an easy question to answer but have a look at this comparison charts which can be found throughout the internet.
Click here to go to our renewable case studies home page
The video below shows a full panel installation being completed in single day:
For further information on Solar PV please visit here