Electricity is the most required and important element of human life. We cannot imagine our day to day life without electricity. Electricity is generated using conventional (coal, diesel) and non conventional (water, wind, sunlight) energy sources. The recent and latest trend is to generate electricity from solar energy. The solar panel (made up of solar-photovoltaic cells) converts solar energy in to electrical energy. Several hundreds or thousands of solar panels to gather generates electrical energy in terms of Mega Watt (MW). For any small unit (single street light, solar light) single solar panel can used.
Now to get maximum electrical energy from solar panel it is required that solar panel should always face towards sun. It should not be covered by any object (or obstacle) or should not come in shadow region. During day time sun moves from east to west. If solar panel is stationary it may be possible that it can be covered some time or may be in shadow region after a period. So there is a need of some mechanism that moves solar panel in the direction of sun. The arrangement should be made in such a way that solar panel automatically moves as it detects shadow region – that means less sunlight. In other way the solar panel should track sunlight (daylight).
The given project demonstrates how to move solar panel in the direction of light. It uses two LDRs as light sensor one for left and another for right and a stepper motor. The movement of stepper motor indicates movement of solar panel. When light is falling on both LDRs the motor is stationary. As light falling on any LDR increases it means other LDR is in shadow region or it is covered. So stepper motor moves in the direction of more light. Motor rotates till light falling on both LDR becomes same. That’s how motor rotates in either direction as light falling on any one LDR increases. The project uses AVR micro controller ATMega32 that will take controlling action to rotate stepper motor (solar panel) in the direction of maximum light.
For more detail: Light Tracker Demonstration