Cloverleaf Solar Power Information & Peak Sun Hours
Solar Green Energy Summary for Cloverleaf, Texas
Fixed Tilt Sunlight Hours: 4.7 hours per day
1-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 6.7 hours per day
2-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 7.4 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.
The latitude at the equator of the earth is zero degrees. This is where sunlight strikes the earth most directly. Due to the earth's curved shape, sunlight hits at a various angles depending on location. As latitude increases, the further you are located from the equator and more variance you see in sunlight hours. The latitude of Cloverleaf is 29.8.
You will notice that the average peak sun hours for Cloverleaf change based on the type of panel being used. The reason for this is quite simple. A fixed panel does exactly what it sounds like, remains fixed in one position at all times. A 1-axis and 2-axis panels have axis that allow them to rotate. The 1-axis rotates with the sun's daily east to west movement while a 2-axis also adjusts for seasonal changes.
There are more variables than latitude that can change average peak sun hours. Weather patterns and geography will influence solar insolation that reaches your system. Thick grey storm clouds for example will block out a lot of the sun to the point where there may be no peak sun hours in the middle of the day when the sun is usually very powerful. Trees and mountains can deflect the sunlight, so be sure your solar panel is selectively placed.
In Cloverleaf you can look at the average peak sun hours of a fixed solar panel mount, which will be 4.7 hours. This number iis an estimate based on data of previous years. With a tracking mount in Cloverleaf you could theoretically increase the amount of peak sun hours per with a 1-axis mount, and get 6.7 hours, or a 2-axis mount and potentially increase your average to 7.4 hours.