Monday, 1 April 2013

Solar Power and Light Pollution.

Many of you may not be aware of the "PV Panel Light Pollution" legislation which comes into effect today. (April 1st 2013.) Link 

Basically, it requires all householders with shiny PV panels on their roofs to cover them up at night.
A range of lightweight canvas covers in various tile/slate shades are available which can be attached to your roof in under 20 minutes. Obviously, ladders and roof rails can reduce this time considerably, even more so if your wife can be sited on the roof eaves.

How can I avoid this legislation?



The light pollution is only a problem during full moon periods combined with clear skies. Many householders are planning to install roller blinds which can be pulled down over the PV panels during these times. Some of the larger DIY retailers are offering spray cans of black paint attached to long poles, these have the advantage of being easily wiped off each morning using industrial chemicals.

Alternatively, the shiny surfaces on the PV panels can be rendered "matt" by carefully rubbing with sandpaper or an industrial angle grinder. Readers should be aware that reductions in output of between 40-50% can occur using this method, even more so if the glass is actually broken.

I know that some of you are considering removing the panels altogether each evening and storing them in a convenient garage or shed. This is the option favoured by UK Environment Minister Richard Benyon. He is quoted as saying "not only will this legislation improve the environment, it will also generate jobs."

I'm sure that once we become used to covering our panels we will once again be thrilled by the improved view of the stars and galaxies above us.
Good luck...




Icarus 
Twitter: (@solaricarus)

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