Oak Harbor Solar Power Information & Peak Sun Hours
Solar Green Energy Summary for Oak Harbor, Ohio
Fixed Tilt Sunlight Hours: 4 hours per day
1-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 5.1 hours per day
2-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 5.3 hours per day
Peak sun hours are a vital measurement to understand when considering the installation of solar panels. Peak sun hours are not the same as total sunlight hours because not every hour of sunlight during the day has enough strength and solar insolation to qualify as a peak sun hour. The rule of thumb is that a peak sun hour is when the intensity of the sun that is hitting your solar panel is providing at least 1,000 watts per square meter. This is an arbitrary number, but it is a number where most solar panels will be producing an efficient output and not underperforming due to sunshine that is not strong enough or direct enough.
Knowing the latitude of Oak Harbor will help estimate average peak sun hours for your area. The latitude is used to accurately estimate the time of sunrise and sunset, thus giving you the total hours of daylight each day. Once you know the total hours of daylight, you can estimate the amount of peak sun hours based on a number of variables such as weather, time of year, the angle of the solar panel.
Since a fixed solar panel is set in one position it is ideal to place it at an angle that will expose the panel to the most sunlight throughout the year. This angle is generally the same angle of your latitude which is 41.5 for Oak Harbor. You do not need to strategically place a 1-axis or 2-axis panel as much as you do a fixed panel. A 1-axis panel follows the movement of the sun during the day. Additionally, a 2-axis panel also adjusts for the suns various positions in the sky throughout the year.
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.
We can take the latitude of Oak Harbor and use that number to know the amount of total sunlight hours in the region from sunlight to sunset and estimate that with a fixed solar panel, Oak Harbor will receive 4 average peak sun hours per day. This number can be increased to 5.1 hours by using a 1-axis tracking mount, or 5.3 hours from a 2-axis tracking mount.