You probably already know what solar power is. Solar power has been around for a while but it’s only recently that gadgets and devices have allowed everyday people to utilize it. There are improvements to the technology all the time and homes and businesses are now regularly using solar power to save energy, money and even make some on the side. If you’re looking to learn more then you’ve come to the right place.
Let’s start with the basics. How does solar power work? Solar power generation works by using photoelectric or photovoltaic cells. These cells capture the sunlight and convert it to energy which can be used to provide power. You only need about one square meter of solar panel to produce enough energy to light a 100-watt light bulb.
Solar power isn’t only used to provide electricity for light. Solar energy is regularly used to provide heat. You can heat your home using glass solar panels on the roof of your home. One of the major benefits of using this type of solar thermal system is that you’ll save money on your energy bills.
Even extremely hot temperatures can be achieved by using solar energy. Solar furnaces use mirrors to capture sunlight and can provide very high temperatures.
One of the biggest benefits of solar energy is that it’s free. Not only will you not be having to depend on fossil fuels and other forms of power, but you will also be able to massively reduce your on-going costs – that is, after you’ve spent the initial money on investing in the systems.
Rural locations and areas which are far away from standard (or more conventional) sources of energy are going to benefit from solar power. Unfortunately, in the sunniest countries, the resources aren’t quite there yet for everyone to fully utilize solar energy to it’s fullest potential.
There are, however, many common uses for solar power today – some include solar calculators, garden lights, garden fountains and even phone chargers or other battery chargers.
One of the main issues surrounding solar energy is the fact that sunlight isn’t available 24/7 in all parts of the world. There are many places that don’t really get a huge amount of sunlight. Obviously, the sunnier the location, the more beneficial solar energy will be for the consumer. Solar power does depend massively on the sun and so places like the UK are struggling to keep up with the technology available – purely because the poor weather can hinder the advantages that could be had, were the sun to shine a little more often. However, solar power can be used for smaller devices – the bigger the device or system, the more sunlight is needed.
Solar power is far more popular in places like California where the sun shines almost constantly. It’s much easier to generate solar energy from the levels of sunlight that you get in places like Los Angeles for example.
California’s goal is to increase the use of solar power consumption to 10% in the coming years. The use of solar power is being enhanced year after year with the advancements in technology.
There are new ways being discovered all the time to increase the potential of solar energy. It used to be that buying solar systems was extremely expensive – and of course, this would put people off. However, today you can get access to the benefits of solar energy for as little as $200. Solar power kits and DIY solar energy kits are more affordable now and there are even advances in the technology which is bringing the power generation indoors.