There are a few design elements and considerations that Ember LED has integrated into its products to make solar lighting possible, even when the sun isn't shining.
As you know, solar panels produce the most energy on sunny, clear days. However, many people think that this means that solar panels stop working when it's rainy, snowy, foggy or cloudy, which isn't true. Most solar photovoltaic panels will work at about 10-25% efficiency during inclement weather. While this is less than usual, it's still enough to help power an exterior lighting system.
In fact, Germany is the solar capital of the world with half of the world's solar energy capacity. However, Germany gets about as much sunlight as Alaska. So, you don't need to live in the desert or a tropical island for solar to work for you - you just need a to purchase solar products with smart design, like Ember LED's eShine Series. Ember LED's solar lighting systems use only LEDs, or light emitting diodes, which are incredibly energy efficient. They don't need too much energy - or too many perfect, sunny days - to produce bright, powerful light.
Reliable, constant solar lighting is possible because of batteries. Without batteries, a solar powered lighting system would only work during the day, because that's when sunlight is available. Since the majority of outdoor lighting is used from dusk to dawn, energy storage is crucial. Ember LED's systems are able to generate electricity from the sun's rays during the day, then store that power in a battery for lighting up at night.
Just as a solar lighting system must use batteries to work at night, a well-designed solar lighting system will always include a powerful battery with backup capacity for days without much sun. In fact, Ember LED's solar powered eShine series is designed to store enough power for the lighting to run for 4-5 nights with absolutely no sunlight (complete darkness, like the inside of a closet). As previously mentioned, even on cloudy, rainy, or snowy days, enough sunlight peeks through to generate some power. So, in actuality, the lighting has closer to 6-12 days of backup power for inclement weather.
With proper design, solar power can provide bright and consistent lighting anywhere in North America. In places that are prone to inclement weather, your lighting system may just require a larger solar panel, a smart lighting schedule, or a few extra lights to function just like it would in Las Vegas.
This is why Ember LED does not sell "one size fits all" products. It sells customized solutions. Thanks to 10 years of experience in the solar lighting industry, we know the right questions to ask to ensure effective system design. Our team of representatives will work with you to understand your project and design a solar lighting system that will meet all of your requirements and expectations. Ember LED's solar lighting systems are even programmable and dimmable, so you can not only schedule them to meet your site's specific needs, but they will save energy while doing so.
Photo credit: h080