South Tucson Solar Power Information & Peak Sun Hours
Solar Green Energy Summary for South Tucson, Arizona
Fixed Tilt Sunlight Hours: 6.2 hours per day
1-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 8.4 hours per day
2-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 8.4 hours per day
The average amount of peak sun hours in a day is a different and more useful number as it relates to solar panels than total sun hours. Total sun hours are exactly what you would expect; the total amount of hours that the sun is out during a 24 hour period. Peak sun hours, on the other hand, are the total number of hours in a day where the sunshine is strong enough to to be absorbed and used by solar panels. Sunlight early in the morning or late at night is often not strong enough to count toward peak sun hours. Because of this, total sun hours will always be less than peak sun hours. Looking at the average peak sun hours in South Tucson throughout the year can help you better estimate the amount of solar panels you will need to power your business or home.
The equator has a latitude of zero while South Tucson has a latitude of 32.2. Any city located on the equator will receive the most sunlight throughout the year because the sunlight arrives at a perpendicular 90 degree angle to the earth at the equator. The further you are from the equator the more your daily sunlight hours can vary.
You will notice the difference in peak sunlight hours depending on the panel type. The more flexibility the solar panel has the efficient it can be throughout the day and the year. A fixed solar panel remains in the same position at all times. A 1-axis panel follows the sun throughout the day as it moves through the sky and eventually sets. A 2-axis panel not only tracks the daily movement, but also adjusts based on the sun's changing position in the sky throughout the year as the seasons change.
Peak sun hours are greatly affected by weather patterns. Cloud coverage is a huge factor in peak sun hours per day because heavy cloud coverage will diminish the power of the solar insolation. You can use historical climate data to estimate average cloud and weather coverage, but it will obviously vary slightly from year to year.
Since we know the latitude of South Tucson we can take the average amount of total sunlight hours and estimate that with a fixed solar panel there would be an average of 6.2 peak sun hours per day. 8.4 hours per day with a 1-axis tracking mount that tracks the sun from sunrise to sunset, and 8.4 hours with a 2-axis tracking mount that tracks the sun everywhere in the sky.