The Importance of Solar Energy

What is the importance of solar energy research?

Carbon emissions due to the consumption of fossil fuels are becoming very difficult to control. Because of this the environment of the earth is fast changing and the imminent threat of global warming is always present. Research into energy generation through alternative energy sources is the only answer for us. Solar energy is considered the ideal form of alternate energy. Due to this reason, researchers, scientists and governments are investing huge amounts of money, time and efforts in the research being conducted on how to best utilize solar energy. Many Governments of several countries are spending millions of dollars and utilizing tremendous amounts of energy in trying to discover the most ideal method to preserve energy and reduce the carbon emissions left by fossil fuels.  For this purpose, solar energy seems to be the solution to all the problems faced by our planet. It is free of cost; it is easy to obtain and it also seems to come from a never ending source: the sun.

What is the advantage of generating electricity by solar energy?

Solar energy is a “green” method of generating electricity. Solar energy does not release any emissions in the environment and therefore does not contribute to the carbon footprint left by man. It also comes from a source which is also renewable that is, the sun. Solar energy is the answer to the rapidly changing environment on our plant. If it is utilized on a large scale, then the focus will remove from using the earth’s fossil fuel to generate electricity. With the imminent threat of global warming the earth’s fast depleting fossil fuel are only adding to the problem, by releasing dangerous carbon emissions in our atmosphere which contribute to the overall green house effect. Solar energy does not release any green house gases while generating electricity.

How can solar energy generate electricity?

Solar energy can generate electricity with the help of PV panels. These photo voltaic panels are composed of solar cells which in turn are made of a photo voltaic material. It is this photo voltaic material that actually generates electricity upon exposure to the sun’s rays and solar energy. The electricity generated by these solar cells can be used to power almost anything. From small appliances like a calculator or a charger, to entire homes, offices and even industries can be powered with the help of solar energy and PV panels.

Where can photo voltaic panels be fitted?

PV panels can be fitted almost everywhere. They can be fitted on small appliances to larger appliances and even cars. PV panels have become more and more popular and these days many homes are being constructed with built in PV panels on their roofs. Solar powered street lamps have been set up in parks and even neighborhoods all over the world. PV panels have also been set up on an industrial scale. In industries, solar energy is being utilized for the processes of distillation, sterilization, disinfection and also lighting. Space cooling and heating and purification of water can also be done on an industrial scale with the help of solar energy. PV panels are being set up in swimming pools so that they can be heated with the help of solar energy.

Solar energy being used as a primary power source:

In developing countries, due to the lack of infrastructure many villages are deprived of electricity since there are hundreds of miles between grid stations. Solar energy plants are being built in such villages in order to provide the villagers with power. In such situations solar energy acts as a primary source of power generation. This environmentally friendly and extremely cost effective means of power generation is very popular in powering “green” vehicles as well. Solar energy is also being used as a primary source of power to power street lamps in parks. These street lamps are being fitted with PV panels that charge up throughout the day and provide electricity to the lights during the night time.

Solar energy helps save on electricity bills:

Many people, especially in Australia, are building PV panels and integrating them in their homes. PV panels generate electricity and save on the costs of electricity bills tremendously. Even if solar energy is not used as a primary source of power generation, it is definitely used as a secondary or back up source of power generation if for any reason the primary source may fail. It can also be alternated with the primary source of power generation in a way that while the solar cells are charging, electricity can be used from the primary source, while at night, when the solar cells are fully charged, electricity generated through the solar cells is consumed. Electricity created by solar energy can also be stored if not immediately utilized. It can also be converted into other forms of energy as well for example heat energy to heat homes during winter. If electricity created by the solar cells is alternated with electricity bought through electrical supplier then electricity bills can actually be cut in half. Not only will this help people save money, but it puts the load off the earth’s fossil fuel reserves which are fast depleting and whose emissions are contributing to the green house effect on our planet.