This topic firstly divides into main terms Solar and Energy, therefore defining each of them individually to make it simpler and more interesting

Solar: relating, causing, denoting energy derived from sun’s rays

Energy: Energy is defined in science as the ability to do work. One form of energy may be converted into another without violating a law.

Therefore, by using these two statements we can say that solar energy can be called as:

“The use of sun energy or sun rays to do some work done.”Solar energy refers to capturing the energy from the Sun and then converting it into electricity. We can also use the term solar power with the same meaning. The Sun’s energy is in the form of solar radiation. It subsidizes to support development and job creation where it is installed

SOLAR ENERGY A REVOLUTION
Rimsha Zia
Rimsha Zia

Solar Energy A Revolution

Keywords: Solar Energy, Photovoltaic, Forms of Photovoltaic, Crystalline Silicone PV Panels, Thin Films, Concentrating Solar Panel, Solar Water Heater, Active Solar Heating and Cooling, Passive Solar Lighting and Heating, Installation Barriers to Solar Panel

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This topic firstly divides into main terms Solar and Energy, therefore defining each of them individually to make it simpler and more interesting

Solar: relating, causing, denoting energy derived from sun’s rays

Energy: Energy is defined in science as the ability to do work. One form of energy may be converted into another without violating a law.

Therefore, by using these two statements we can say that solar energy can be called as:

“The use of sun energy or sun rays to do some work done.”

 Solar energy refers to capturing the energy from the Sun and then converting it into electricity. We can also use the term solar power with the same meaning. The Sun’s energy is in the form of solar radiation. It subsidizes to support development and job creation where it is installed.

Understanding of solar energy:

Solar energy is clean and renewable and there are many ways to use it. Solar energy can be:

Converted to electricity

Used for lighting

Used for heating

Used for cooling

 

Understanding of solar energy:
Solar energy is clean and renewable and there are many ways to use it. Solar energy can be:
Converted to electricity
Used for lighting
Used for heating
Used for cooling
Solar energy technologies include:

Photovoltaic

Concentrating solar panel:

Active Solar Heating and Cooling

Solar water heater

Passive solar design

Photovoltaic:

Photovoltaic PV systems convert solar energy or solar radiation into electricity. PV systems can take the form of panels or building materials. PV can be used in cold climates, have no “essential” moving parts. It uses very little amount of water and are well appropriate for urban areas. These systems are easy to transport and install and can be used to generate electricity even in areas where no electrical grid is available. 

Photovoltaic PV systems are scalable and can be made to be as big as a power plant operation or as small as a hand-held calculator. One of the best advantages is that they produce no pollution and can be installed just about anywhere without disturbing human activities and do not require the acquisition of sites. In addition, because PV systems only require water for routine cleaning that is maintenance, they are suitable for areas with low water availability. If every suitable rooftop of our country were covered with PV panels, up to a quarter of country’s electricity could be produced by PV systems.

Photovoltaic Power:

There are two most common forms of PV are as follows

Crystalline Silicone

Thin Films

Crystalline silicone PV panels tend to be more expensive than “thin films” but are more efficient of converting Solar radiations into electricity. These panels can be mounted on a roof, on top of a pole, or on a piece of machinery

Thin films cost less and require less silicon. They can also be integrated into existing building features quite unremarkable. 

Concentrating solar panel:

Concentrating Solar Panel CSP plants function through mirrors that focus the suns energy to harness heat that can either be used directly or to generate electricity. This type of technology has been generating power in desert areas of the Western USA for decades.

Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) can provide a steady stream of power by storing the sun’s heat and using that heat to power a generator. These systems use mirrors to focus light on a receiver to heat a fluid. This heated fluid is used to boil water. Once water is boiling, steam can be used to run turbines and generators.

Photovoltaic PV systems are scalable and can be made to be as big as a power plant operation or as small as a hand-held calculator. One of the best advantages is that they produce no pollution

Solar water heaters:

These rooftop collectors can capture solar energy and produce hot water. They are very efficient, capturing up to 87 percent of the solar energy that reaches them. Solar water heating functions via sunlight absorbing pipes, which heat water as it travels. These systems can absorb as much as 87% of the energy that is radiated from a section of solar collectors.

Active Solar Heating and Cooling:

Collectors like those used for heating water can also be used to heat air, replacing furnaces and boilers. These systems can generate 50 percent or more of the energy needed to heat a building.

When using active solar heating/cooling systems, collectors are typically either glazed plates or evacuated tubes as we all know that solar energy used to make water hot or to convert a cool place heated, we can also use this solar energy to cool a building. The process can be broken down like this

Air is cycled through desiccant material that pulls humidity out of the air. One common example of a desiccant material is a silica gel packet; such is often found in the packaging of many products.

The desiccant material is then baked dry by solar heat.

The dry air can then be used to evaporate water from other sources.

This process is just like the evaporation of sweat, a natural process that cools the human body. Active solar cooling systems are most effective on sunny days.

Passive Solar Lighting and Heating / passive solar design:

This refers to the design of homes and buildings that take advantage of natural sunlight to provide heat, light, and so on. In the last decade, most builders designed homes that took advantage of the sun to provide heat and light to their homes. However, during the twentieth century, builders depend on the sun less and starts focusing to get the cheap energy to provide heat and light to homes

Using passive solar lighting is called “daylighting” and can reduce energy costs by as much as one third of the total.

Homes can be built to efficiently control and produce the power of the sun, from passive design to PV panels. With solar energy, there is the potential of “zero net energy homes”. A zero-net energy “produces as much energy as consumes

Solar power and solar energy are two different things: solar power refers specifically to the conversion of the sun’s rays into electricity, while solar energy refers more broadly to the sun’s rays and heat, including passive solar design or solar water heating.

 

There must be a question arises in your mind that where should we install these systems so let’s clear these things now:

Like almost every residential place, our homes, commercial buildings also can make use of solar power. It is estimated that about 60-65 percent of commercial roof space is suitable for photovoltaics. Solar power can be used or installed at anyplace where there is sunshine, so this included offices, schools, churches, and so on. Solar could be used to power district heating systems, district energy systems.

Concentrating Solar Panel CSP plants function through mirrors that focus the suns energy to harness heat that can either be used directly or to generate electricity

Perfect angle and the ideal location to install the systems:

The ideal location differs greatly reliant on what hemisphere you live in for example:

If you live in the Northern hemisphere, your solar panel should face south, and if you live in the Southern hemisphere, your solar panel should face true north. 

If you live very close to the equator in a place like Singapore, you will be better off with a flat-mounted PV system.

Avoid shading, particularly shading from trees or neighboring buildings Solar panels can be installed in the parking complex giving us a feature of canopies.

After selecting the location and angle there are still two major connection

Series connection

Parallel connection

World hands on this technology:

The Industrial Revolution (1860) when people expected that coal was becoming rarer. This led to the installation of the first PV system in New York in 1884.

Noor Complex is the world’s largest concentrated solar power (CSP) plant, located in the Sahara Desert. The project has a 580-megawatt capacity and is expected to provide electricity for over 1 million people once completed by 2020.

Pakistan has some of the highest values of insolation in the world with eight to nine hours of sunshine per day, ideal climatic conditions for solar power generation. Yet, the country has been slow to adopt the technology. On May 29, 2012, Pakistan inaugurated its first solar power on-grid power plant in Islamabad. The country aims to build the world’s largest solar power park, the Quaid-e-Azam Solar Power Park (QASP) in the Cholistan Desert, Punjab, by 2017 with a 1 GW capacity. A plant of this size would be sufficient to power around 320,000 homes. Beaconhouse installed the first high quality integrated solar energy system with a 10 kW power generation capacity capable of grid tie-in at Beaconhouse Canal Side Campus, Lahore.

From the business point of view, such as the World’s Largest Laundromat in Berwyn, Illinois, install solar water heating systems. This laundromat has installed a system with the capacity to produce 2,400 gallons of hot water a day.

In industrial way, largest of these systems is the Frito-Lay plant in California. This factory uses 5 acres of solar concentrators to provide heat to cook their food products, replacing the same amount of natural gas as the amount that is used in 340 average American homes.

Solar panels on farms could be used to: generate the electricity needed to operate a farm, keep crops cool, pump water, provide irrigation, heat greenhouses, ventilate barns, or even dry crops.

Currently Germany is leading in solar technology, back in 2008 Germany installed solar capacity of 32,200 MW. While Germany leads in installed capacity, the United States and China follow closely behind in terms of amounts of money invested in solar energy.

China has major concerns about pollution hopes to use renewable energy to decrease air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions and The U.S. is working on to double the generation of electricity by 2020.

Dirty Energy

Nonrenewable, or “dirty,” energy includes fossil fuels such as oil, gas, and coal. Nonrenewable sources of energy are only available in limited amounts and take a long time to replenish.

Renewable Energy

Energy can be called as clean energy, the form of energy comes from natural sources or processes that are constantly restocked. For example, sunlight or wind keep shining and blowing.

Installation barriers:

There are still many barriers preventing the spread of solar energy even the cost is rapidly reducing:

Failure to incorporate social benefits

Risk

Utility barriers

Regulatory barriers

Upfront cost

Capital availability

But this issue can be resolve by if:

Government backed financial incentives

Putting solar on the same level as traditional forms of energy

Overcoming the cost

Guaranteeing access to solar for all

Installation barriers
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