Fireco Solar Power Information & Peak Sun Hours
Solar Green Energy Summary for Fireco, West Virginia
Fixed Tilt Sunlight Hours: 4.4 hours per day
1-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 5 hours per day
2-Axis Tilt Sunlight Hours: 5.8 hours per day
The average peak sun hours of Fireco is a crucial measurable component needed to efficiently implement a solar power system in a home or business. Put simply, peak sun hours are the hours of sunlight a day that are strong enough to be efficiently absorbed by solar panels and eventually turned into usable electricity. Not every minute of sunlight during a day is strong enough to be useful to a solar power system. Think about just minutes after the sunrises, which officially counts towards total hours of sunlight, but is usually too weak to be counted in peak sun hours because the strength of the solar insolation is not strong enough near the horizon to be absorbed and turned into electricity at an efficient rate. Times during the day like this, where the sun is out but not strong enough, are not counted as peak sun hours. In other words, the amount of peak sun hours in a location will theoretically always be less than total sunlight hours for a given day.
If you open the newspaper in the morning or watch the weather channel on the news you can get an accurate prediction of sunrise and sunset each day for Fireco. However, still knowing that the latitude of Fireco is 37.6 can be a helpful number for your solar panel setup and planning. The closer your latitude is to zero the closer you are to the equator. At the equator you find the most consistent total sunlight hours throughout any given day of the year. As your latitude increases you can see larger discrepancies of daily sunlight hours during the year. For example, having very long summer days and very short and dark winter days
The sun moves through the sky during the day, and changes positions in the sky throughout the year as the seasons change. A fixed solar panel remains fixed in position during this movement. So, although it is effective in capturing sunlight, a 1-axis or 2-axis panel can be more efficient. A 1-axis panel tracks the sun's movement throughout the day from sunrise to sunset. In addition to that, the 2-axis panel also accounts for the movement throughout the year.
The sun is a great ball of gas that rises and sets every day that the earth rotates while in orbit around the sun. Barring any major disasters this is a very predictable occurance every day. Latitude helps predict this even more, narrowing it down to the minute for sunrise and sunset. But some things aren’t as predictable that will greatly influence the efficiency of solar panels. Weather and cloud coverage for example can greatly diminish peak sun hours on any given day. Thick storm clouds will block a high percentage of the sun's rays, resulting in lower output of your solar panels. Weather needs to be factored into deciding when to use your system, or how much output one expects to get.
For a fixed mounted solar panel in Fireco, meaning that the solar panel will not track the sun in the sky, once can expect about 4.4 average peak sun hours per day. A 1-axis mount would increase this number to 5 hours per day because the panel would be facing the sun throughout the day. A 2-axis system that tracks the sun in the sky every day of the year would get approximately 5.8 hours per day in Fireco.