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Solar Electricity Handbook: A Simple, Practical Guide to Solar Energy-Designing and Installing Photovoltaic Solar Electric Systems

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Solar Electricity Handbook: A Simple, Practical Guide to Solar Energy-Designing and Installing Photovoltaic Solar Electric Systems [Paperback]

Michael Boxwell
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 1, 2009 1907215018 978-1907215018 2nd
The Solar Electricity Handbook is a simple, practical guide to using electric solar panels and designing and installing photovoltaic solar PV systems. The book includes numerous examples and is written for anyone interested in finding out more about solar electricity or planning their own solar photovoltaic installation. Readers also gain access to a web site with a comprehensive set of solar calculators and online tools to make solar design as straightforward as possible.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

The Solar Electricity Handbook 2010 Edition has been extensively updated with new chapters on grid-tie solar electricity, updated information, new diagrams and more information. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

From the Author

Michael Boxwell has designed and installed a number of solar electric systems over a number of years.

Specialising in off grid electric applications, Michael has designed photovoltaic electric systems for projects as diverse as powering on-street vending machines to charging electric vehicles. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 154 pages
  • Publisher: Code Green Publishing; 2nd edition (June 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1907215018
  • ISBN-13: 978-1907215018
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 0.4 x 6.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,771,364 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews
89 of 92 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book on solar power September 1, 2009
As a newbie to solar power, I was worried that this book would be too technical for me, but I have been pleasantly surprised. I bought this book along with another one and this is definately the best for its clear descriptions, level of detail and general readability.

The book gives a lot of practical advice and from the very beginning it is obvious that the author knows what he is talking about. The book covers the subject very well and I feel confident that I will be able to install my off-grid solar electric system easily based on the practical experience shown in this book. The authors web site also provides a lot of really useful information including a superb project calculator that should be the first stop for anyone considering solar power.

Highly recommended.
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41 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderfully direct and helpful book July 31, 2009
I love this book! The information is unbiased and to the point. It explains what solar electricity systems are currently available and how they work. It lists the advantages and disadvantages of solar energy components and systems and walks you through how to select, cost, implement and maintain the best system for your needs.
It's associated web site provides nifty calculators which do all the complicated math for you.

It explains electricity and solar electricity so simply and concisely that I am planning to use it to teach my 10 year old daughter about electricity.
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24 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Introduction to Solar Power September 28, 2009
This book is a great introductory book for someone thinking about taking on a small to medium size solar project. The book starts from fundamentals and does not assume any prior knowledge. It clearly explains theoretical concepts which are required later to help the designer.
For a solar project to be successful a considerable amount of thinking and planning needs to be done up front. The author leads the reader through the design process and discusses the various options that a designer is presented with. Attempting to make decisions without this information could prove to be very expensive making the book a complete bargain. The book uses the example of a vacation house installation to explain how decisions could be made for a particular project.

In addition to the design and installation guidance, the book includes quite a bit of useful data for the US and UK reader.

- Solar Insulation values
- Latitude and Sun height charts
- Typical Power Consumption figures

In conclusion, the book is an excellent purchase for anyone contemplating taking on a solar electricity project. The information is presented clearly and is well organised. It is not intimidating for the beginner but also provides useful reference information for the more experienced.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great PV Resource! February 8, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I wanted to learn more about photovoltaic panels so I bought this book. I found the book simple and interesting to read with the concepts well explained. As an Architect, I appreciated the thoroughness leading to ready evaluation and possible application to my own projects.

I was a little hesitant about the author being based in the UK with different power systems and a locale different than here in the USA, but he did an admirable job of provding information relevant to both sides of the Atlantic.

Very pleased with this purchase. I certainly recommend it.

D. Thomson
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars super handy little guidebook December 13, 2010
By Jame
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Let me set this review up by saying I'm an electrical engineer, although I didn't have much experience in solar or battery systems. I wanted a book to get me up to speed on solar systems so I could build a home project. At first glance the book appears a little lightweight, maybe because it didn't follow the format of typical technical handbooks. However, after working through the book on my project I found it delightful and very effective. He leads you step-by-step in analyzing the situation and designing your system. Just a few comments... it's a British book so socially-isolated US readers will get to puzzle a few of the terms. A glossary would have been nice, but not essential. If you are thinking of designing a system I recommend modeling the system on a spreadsheet like Excel, entering in the equations you find in the book. Then you can easily tweak the system model and see what the results will be. I haven't used it but he also has lot's of online resources. the bottom line is if you are thinking about your first solar project I highly recommend this book.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book does a good job of explaining what the solar-equipment terms mean that you see in magazines, other books, and vendor displays which will help you deduce what type of system you want - there are several to choose from! With this book, some time internet-searching and studying vendor PDF's, a few emails/phone calls, and a reasonable amount of cash you'll be able to assemble a functioning, practical solar electric system of the correct type for your purposes, I think. The rudimentary wiring schematics are very adequate, but there aren't any "standard drawing" type of illustrations, so you need to know how to build and wire, in accordance with the codes that are applicable for your area. This is a book that I'll keep, and I hope that Michael publishes updates over the coming years because this is a fast changing field. Agreed that its a little tough to read and needs to have some fundamental editing and proofing work done on it.
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More About the Author

Michael Boxwell is a technical consultant and designer and a former managing director of an electric vehicle supplier in the UK.

He is the author of a number of books including the Solar Electricity Handbook, Owning An Electric Car and The Electric Car Guide series of books. He also runs the Reva Electric Car owners club.

He is currently working on a number of new eco books, a TV series and a children's book of stories. He is a regular guest on Transport Evolved and This Week In Energy.

Michael lives in the United Kingdom and is married with two children.

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