In recent times, the electricity demand in India started increasing many folds. However, the supply of electricity is not sufficient and reliable in some parts of the country. As a result of this, people are using renewable sources of energy as an alternative to generating electricity. There are many renewable resources, but among all, the use of solar energy is rapidly increasing in India.
Installing a solar panel over your rooftop is the best way to use solar energy to generate electricity as it benefits you in many ways. It reduces your electricity bills to a considerable extent or sometimes even eliminates the bill. A solar panel increases the value of your property and also gives you secure access to electricity.
But when installing a solar panel, the most important part is selecting an inverter. The inverter is the main part of any solar panel system. There are mainly two types of inverters a normal solar inverter and the hybrid solar inverter.
A conventional solar inverter converts Direct current(DC) produced by the solar panels into the Alternating current(AC). This current is then used by household appliances either through an on-grid system or an off-grid system.
On the other hand, a hybrid inverter converts the DC power into AC power and supplies the AC power to both the grid as well as to household appliances. But unlike a standard solar inverter, it has a battery backup which stores the excess of DC power and supplies it to the inverter when required. As it is a multi-tasker it is called a multi-mode inverter.
Types of solar inverters
There are different types of solar inverter available in the market today. The solar inverters are classified based on their installation and advantages. There mainly three types of solar inverters which are as follows,
A string inverter is used when the solar panels are linked to each other and form a string. These strings are then connected to the string inverter. A single string can consist of as few as three panels or up to 20 and more panels. The DC power that the solar panel generates is put down into the string inverter. The string inverter then converts DC power into AC power.
These inverters are commonly used for household and commercial purposes. A string inverter usually can last for 20–25 years. They are easy to maintain as well as pocket-friendly.
However, string inverters also have some disadvantages. One of the disadvantages is that all the panels are connected. So, in case if one of the panels fails to produce DC power it can affect the performance of the other panels as well.
Microinverters are very small in size as compared to string inverters. The capacity of a microinverter ranges from 250W to 300W. Every solar panel has its individual microinverter attached at it’s back. Each solars panel’s DC power is converted to AC power by the particular micro-inverter attached to it. Due to this many microinverters are required in a single solar panel system. Therefore, the solar system with microinverters is costlier than string inverters. But they are more efficient and safer than string inverters. With the help of a microinverter, you can monitor each panel’s performance separately. The solar panel systems with microinverters are installed more conveniently.
3. DC power optimizer
This system has power optimizers along with the inverter. Each panel has its own power optimizer. The power optimizer connected at the back of the solar panel’s conditions the DC power instead of converting it into AC power. This DC power then moves to the string inverter and gets converted into AC power. This inverter is a combination of the microinverters and the string inverters. This system is less expensive as compared to the one with microinverters but works efficiently as the system with microinverters.
What does a solar inverter do?
When the sunlight falls on the solar panels, the electrons inside the panel start moving. This generates DC power. The range of this DC power is around 250 Volts to 600 Volts. However, this DC power can not be used by the appliances and electronic devices in your house to function. The DC power first needs to be converted into the AC power. This is where we need the solar inverters. The main function of a solar inverter is to convert the DC power into usable AC electricity.
Working principle of a solar inverter
We know that an inverter’s main function is the conversion of DC power to usable AC electricity. But to achieve this process a set of solid-state devices like the Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors(IGBT’s) are required. These devices are then connected in an H-Bridge arrangement. Once connected, they oscillate the DC power resulting in creating AC power.
Nowadays, transformer-less inverters are available in the market. These inverters are relatively more efficient as compared to the inverters with transformers.
The AC power is obtained with the help of a set-up transformer. This AC power is then used by the local loads or can be supplied to the grid. Every solar power inverter has a micro-controller chip. This chip is preprogrammed to perform different complicated algorithms accurately. This controller improvises the power output from the solar panels using the Maximum Power Point Tracking(MPPT) algorithm.
Advantages of using a solar inverter
There are many advantages of a solar inverter few of which are listed below.
Using a solar inverter saves you a lot of money
With the help of a solar inverter, you can generate your own electricity. As a result of this, you do not have to pay thousands for your electricity bill a month for about 20–25 years( until your system stops working).
It protects the environment
The solar inverter produces electricity using solar energy. Therefore, there are no harmful emissions involved in this process. This helps in reducing the greenhouse effect and protects the environment.
Gives you energy independence
If there is no proper power supply in your area and frequent cutdown of electricity and you should really think about going solar and using a solar inverter. Installing a solar panel with an efficient solar inverter makes you energy independent.
Solar inverters are easy to maintain. You only have to be careful about certain things, like avoiding water contact and weight pressure rest it does not have any specific maintenance expenditure.
They are affordable
We know that solar inverters help us save a lot of money once installed but at the same time its installation is not that expensive. And it is much more affordable than a generator.
Now that we have seen what are solar inverters and hybrid solar inverters we have listed below the best Solar inverter and Hybrid solar inverters available online.
V-Guard Smart Pro 1200 S Solar Inverter
V-Guard Smart Pro 1200 S is an advanced Digital-UPS in the market. This inverter has BlueTooth and wi-fi connectivity and comes with free installation. It is a smart inverter and therefore, it is app-enabled. Once you register on the V-Guard Smart app you can you can control and monitor all the operations. For instance, controlling the power, checking the backup time, switching modes, and charge faster(up to 30%) using the Turbocharger.
If there is no proper power supply in your area then this inverter is going to help you a lot, as this inverter is solar compatible. It will also save you a lot of money as this will reduce the use of electricity from the power grid.
This inverter gives you an uninterrupted lifestyle as it supports a lot of electronic appliances. It can run a LED TV(up to 55), Fan, Tube light, Inverter Refrigerator( up to 320litre), EESL LED Bulb, CFL, Mixer(up to 750W), Room cooler(Up to 300W), Speaker system, 0.75HP Monoblock Pump, Kitchen Chimney (Upto 1200m3/hr). You can charge your phone with the help of your smart inverter even if it has shut down.
It can also run loads up to 100W such as electric iron/toaster and coffee maker if switched to Appliance mode. The inverter also has a battery water topping reminder. This reminds you to fill up the distilled water in the battery based on its consumption.
Luminous NXG1800–24V Solar Hybrid Inverter
Luminous solar 1800 hybrid inverter comes with an inbuilt charge controller of 40 amp. Its priority is to use solar power to reduce electric bills. The inverter saves 3 to 5 units of electricity per day.
The battery of the inverter is charged using the grid as well as the solar panel depending on the availability of the sun. If the solar generation is sufficient it can simultaneously charge the battery and supply it to the connected load. Otherwise, its priority is charging the battery.
This product is super reliable as it is capable of running a lot of appliances. It can run 5 lights, 5 ceiling fans, 1 TV, 1 water cooler. Its load capacity is 1500 VA. This inverter supports a double battery of 24V connected in series. This inverter takes 10–12 hrs to get recharged. This is a pure sine wave inverter.