This system benefits everyone "there is less dependency on fossil fuel power plants" and electricity costs are reduced for owners of photovoltaic systems. A disadvantage of these grid connected systems is that there invertors disconnect in case of a power faillure.

As people search for alternatives to fossil fuel energy, solar energy emerges as one of the cleanest and most practical sources of electricity. But it can also be used in more northerly areas as a backup power system.

This is called net-metering, the specifics depend on your location and utility company.

The main requirement, of course, is sunlight.

Most municipalities have legislation requiring power utility companies to accept electricity produced by solar panels or wind turbines. Solar panels can be installed on Spotlight Housing rooftops or any area that receives a lot of sunshine. They can be of almost any size and are suitable for providing electricity for small items such as calculators or watches right up to complete industrial complexes. The solution is a grid connected system with battery backup.

This makes solar power most practical for southern areas such as California and Arizona. The solar panels consist of a photovoltaic system that converts the energy of the sun into electricity. Their engineers have to know for sure that the grid they are working on is really dead. This is a quite logical demand from the utility companies point of view. The word Photovoltaic is a conjuction of the old Greek word "Photon" meaning light and Volt, the force that makes electrons move.

Photovoltaic systems have existed since the 1950s but only in recent years has the technology matured to the point of making it a viable alternative to power utilities. Batteries can be used but they are expensive and have a limited life span. Because they can be wired together, an array of solar cells can produce enough electricity for residential or commercial needs. As the technology advances, photovoltaic cells are able to produce usable amounts outdoor light of electricity even in low light conditions. But from our point of view it can be a nuicance.

Photovoltaic cells produce electricity by using specially treated materials such as silicon that convert light into power. In a sense, the utility company becomes the storage device. As an alternative, excess solar electricity can be fed back to the power utility company for a credit, and then power can be drawn when needed.

One of the main problems with solar power is storing it for use during non-daylight hours. Indeed, most solar systems do not replace the utility company instead they work in conjunction with it to produce extra electricity that can be fed back into the grid.