Solar Electric (photovoltaic or PV) products convert the sun's energy into electricity. This electricity is then stored in batteries for later use, used to power an appliance such as a water pump directly or fed into the power distribution grid (grid-intertie systems). This energy is then used to run lights, stereos, and any electrical appliance, although it is not generally efficient to run appliances the generate heat such as a baseboard heater or electric stove in all but the largest systems.
Photovoltaics are the simplest form of alternative energy. There are no moving parts in photovoltaic modules and little maintenance is required.