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Solar Home Systems Manual for the Design and Modification of Solar Home System Components

By Vervaart, M. R.

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Book Id: WPLBN0000066484
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.4 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: Solar Home Systems Manual for the Design and Modification of Solar Home System Components  
Author: Vervaart, M. R.
Language: English
Subject: Economics, Finance & business, World Bank.
Collections: Economics Publications Collection
Publication Date:
Publisher: The World Bank


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Vervaart, M. R. (n.d.). Solar Home Systems Manual for the Design and Modification of Solar Home System Components. Retrieved from


Preface: Solar photovoltaics is one of the most cost-effective ways of providing small amounts of electricity to areas without a power grid. Especially in places where people live in scattered houses, the cost of alternatives for providing electricity usually is prohibitively high. Solar home systems (SHSs) are small systems designed to meet the electricity demand of a single household. A solar home system always consists of one or more photovoltaic (PV) modules and a battery, and a load consisting of lights and sockets for radio, television, or appliances. A battery charge regulator is usually added to control charging and discharging of the battery. This manual has two major objectives: To provide necessary background material for the modification of existing designs of solar home system components, especially the battery charge regulator, inverters for fluorescent lamps, and DC?AC inverters. -- To provide background material for completely new designs of solar home system components. The target audience for this manual is primarily engineers in companies producing solar home system components. Engineers in solar energy research institutes also would benefit from the information provided. The solar PV module is by far the most reliable component of a solar home system. Relatively few problems are associated with the PV module. Therefore, we limit ourselves to the designs of the rest of the components, the so-called balance of system (BOS) components. PV systems will be discussed, but only for systems with a power level appropriate to household demands. Aspects of batteries important for BOS components also will be discussed. Because building practices depend very much on local customs and sometimes on regulations, this manual does not discuss to any great extent the support structure for the modules, but focuses on the electrical and electronic components. The emphasis is on the battery charge regulator because it is the single most critical component in a solar home system. Lights are the only appliances discussed in this manual. Lighting is included in most solar home systems, and the lights usually are provided with the system. Some of the larger solar home systems also can be equipped with a DC?AC inverter to allow the use of larger AC appliances. In this manual we have limited ourselves to user experiences relevant for design of technical and nontechnical aspects of solar home systems. Financial aspects will be mentioned in relation to design and system sizing. Institutional settings, ownership issues, financing schemes and after sales arrangements will not be discussed, although these aspects are also critical to the success of solar home system dissemination.


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