Glosary

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glossary

Understanding your proposal

Module - A single solar panel. Each module is tested and rated in DC watts. Higher watts mean

more power output per panel.


Solar Array - Grouping of solar modules.


PV - Photovoltaic. Conversion of sunlight (photons) into electricity (voltage). When light hits a multilayer solar cell, it creates an electric charge between the layers.


Inverter - The inverter changes DC power made by the module into AC power for your building and to connect with the utility grid. Styles include string inverter (a central inverter) and micro inverter (per module inverter).


DC Power Optimizer - An optimizer increases the total energy output from a PV systems by optimizing the output of each individual panel. Optimizers are not the same as micro inverters but have a similar quality as is they allow for variation in tilt, orientation and distance and enhance module level performance and monitoring.


System Size - Size refers to capacity and is measured in kilowatts or kW. Multiply the number of modules by the wattage of each module to get the system size. For example 12 modules x 300 watts each = 3600 watt or 3.6 kW size system.


kW - Kilowatt Size or capacity of a solar system. Unit of power. 1 kW = 1,000 watts 


kWh - Kilowatt hours Measurement of electricity. Number of kilowatts delivered in 1 hour. Monthly electricity bill is kWh used multiplied by the rate utility charges for electricity. A solar system produces a projected number of kWh per year.


Annual Production - The projected number of kWh of electricity produced by a solar system over one year.


Specific Production - The number of kWh of electricity per year per kW of installed capacity.


Price per Watt - The total system price (NWES price is all-inclusive and includes sales tax) divided by the total number of watts in the system size = the per watt cost. Used to compare prices.


Simple Payback Date - Period of time it takes to earn back the entire upfront cost.


Offset Energy Cost - Annual savings on electric bill. Solar electricity replaces utility electricity; the value is based upon the cost of electricity. Over time the savings really add up.


WA Production Incentive, or Renewable Energy System Incentive Program -(RESIP) WA State Legislature established this program to encourage continued solar adoption and clean energy jobs. It pays annually for up to 8 years for each kWh produced by the solar system up to 50% of the cost of the system. Payment rate depends on the state budget year in which the system is completed with a bonus for Made in WA modules. Per utility maximums exist as well as total program cap. Because the incentive is technically a tax rebate to the utility, it is not taxable income to the recipient. Learn more at RCW 82.162.16.165 or

http://www.energy.wsu.edu/RenewableEnergySystemIncentiveProgram.aspx

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