Solar Mango’s Solar Dictionary is a comprehensive, layman-friendly guide to solar energy terms. The Dictionary provides definitions for the key and most common terms used in the solar energy sector in a simple and easy-to-understand manner.




Alternating Current
Anti-Islanding
AMC (Annual Maintenance contract)
ACDB (AC Distribution board)

Balance of System (BOS)
Battery Storage
BIPV
BOO Model
Bidirectional Inverter
Battery backup
Battery bank
Battery Isolator
Backup power

Central Inverters
Charge Controller
Concentrating Photovoltaics
Crystalline Solar Cells
Change over switch

De-rating
Direct Current
DNI (Direct Normal Irradiance)
Downtime
Dual Axis Trackers
DCDB (DC ditribution board)

Energy Payback Time
Earthing

Flat-plate Photovoltaics
Feed In Tariff

Gigawatt-hour (GWh)
Grid
Grid Parity
Grid-tied Solar Power System

Hybrid System

IGBT
Inverter/PCU
Islanding

Junction Box

KWh

LT panel
Life-cycle Cost
Load

Micro Inverters
Mono-crystalline Cells
Mounting Structures
Multi-junction Solar Cells
MWh

Net metering

Off-grid
On-grid
Output .

p-n junction
Peak Capacity
Poly-crystalline Cells
Polysilicon
Power Conditioning Unit
PV array

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Rooftop Grid-tied
Rooftop Solar

Semiconductor
Silicon Wafer
Single Axis Trackers
Single-junction Solar Cells
Smart Grid
Solar Cell
Solar Farms
Solar Insolation
Solar Monitoring Systems
Solar Panel Efficiency
Solar Panels
Solar Water Heating Systems
Stand Alone PV Systems
String Inverters
Single phase supply

Thin Film Solar Cell A thin-film solar cell is a second generation solar cell that is made by depositing one or more thin layers, or thin film (TF) of photovoltaic material on a substrate, such as glass, plastic or metal. A typical crystalline solar cell is made from silicon and contains an active semiconductor material layer that is about 300-micrometers (micrometer is a millionth of a meter) thick. For a thin film solar cell, the equivalent is about 10 micrometer. That is, a thin film cell uses just about 3% of the semiconductor material that a crystalline solar cell does. In addition to amorphous silicon, thin film solar cells are today also made from CdTe (Cadmium Telluride), CIGS (Copper-Indium-Gallium-Selenide) or CIS (Copper-Indium-Selenide).
Tracker Solar trackers assist solar panels in keeping an orientation to enable them receive maximum sunlight. The sun moves from the east to west during the day. If the solar panels are fixed, they cannot have sunlight striking them perpendicular all the time of the day. Solar trackers assist the solar panels in keeping an orientation that enables them to be perpendicular to sunlight.
Three – phase supply Three phase system is designed to supply or use simultaneously three separate alternating currents of the same voltage, but with phases differing by a third of a period.
Tariff A tariff is the pricing structure a retailer charges a customer for solar energy consumption.

Unit Ampere-hour is a unit of electric charge. One ampere-hour is the electric charge that flow in electrical circuit, when a current of 1 ampere is applied for 1 hour. 1Ah = 1A · 1hour. One ampere-hour is equal to 3600 coulombs.

Voltage Voltage, also called electromotive force, is a quantitative expression of the potential difference in charge between two points in an electrical field. The greater the voltage, the greater the flow of electrical current

Watt-hour The watt-hour (symbolized Wh) is a unit of energy equivalent to one watt (1 W) of power expended for one hour (1 h) of time. The watt-hour is not a standard unit in any formal system, but it is commonly used in electrical applications

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Zero down Zero down refers to the amount of down payment required to finance the property which in this case is nothing. A Zero down mortgage will require a higher credit score, and may have a higher interest rate and a higher CMHC premium when compared to a conventional or high-ratio mortgage.
Zero Potential The ideal potential of a point infinitely distant from all electrification