Use of Solar panels is on the increase

The Mass adoption of solar panels by the public as the standard lighting device in Ghana has been on the increase due to the current load shedding of electricity from the national power. In an interview with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Accra, Mr. Ebenezer Ashie, member of the Renewable Energy unit of the Ministry of Energy, said the public especially people in the urban areas were encouraged to patronize the solar panels, but added that the problem with its large-scale adoption had to do with affordability. Mr Ashie said the adoption of the technology by the Ministry of Energy in 1999 was to demonstrate to other organizations the importance that could be derived from using the service. He said due to the high cost of installation of the panels, no other government institution was currently using the facility. However, some private organizations had patronized the service depending on their needs, he added. He said solar energy would be of immense domestic benefit as it could be used for home appliances like the television, radio, chargeable lamps, mobile phones, fans, and lights. He added that solar panels, however, could not be used for electric heaters, irons, air conditioners, and refrigerators because the voltages of those appliances were too high. Mr Ashie recommended to the general public and corporate institutions to purchase the solar panels to cut down the cost of electricity. A solar panel is a technology that transforms sunlight into electrical energy which serves as a back up for the production of electricity directly from sunlight. Components that help the solar panel to operate are the battery which stores and discharges electricity, the charge controller which regulates charging and discharging of batteries to prolong their life-span. There is also the inverter which converts 12V DC electricity to 220-240V AC electricity, and an energy efficient lamp.