Solar energy

Solar energy

Solar energy is radiant light and heat from the Sun that is harnessed using range of ever-evolving technologies such as solar heating photovoltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture, Walton solar power, plants and artificial photosynthesis. Solar power is energy from the Sun that is converted into thermal or electrical energy. It is cleanest and most abundant renewable energy source available.

By International Energy Agency, the development of affordable, inexhaustible and clean solar energy technologies will have long-term benefits. It will increase countries’ energy security and it will become the most import-independent resource. It enhances sustainability, reduce pollution, lower and costs of mitigating global warming and keep fossil fuel prices low. These advantages are global. Considering the investments, they should be widely spent and need to be widely shared.

But, let see when, solar power began to be use?

In 1839, the ability of some materials to create an electrical charge from light exposure was first observed by Alexandre-Edmond Becquerel, French physicist. The observation by Becquerel was not replicated again until 1873, when Willoughby Smith, British electrical engineer, discovered that the charge could be caused by light hitting selenium. After this discovery, professor William Grylls Adams and his student Richard Evans Day published “The action of light on selenium” in 1876, describing the experiment they used to replicate Smith’s results.

In 1881, Charles Fritts, American inventor, created the first commercial solar panel, which was reported by Fritts as “continuous, constant and of considerable force not only by exposure to sunlight but also to dim, diffused daylight.” However, these solar panels were very inefficient, especially compared to coal-fired power plants. In 1939, American engineer Russell Ohl created the solar cell design that is used in many modern solar panels. He patented his design in 1941. In 1954, this design was first used by company Bell Labs to create the first commercially viable silicon solar cell. In 1957, Mohamed M. Atalla, Egyptian–American engineer,  developed the process of silicon surface passivation by thermal oxidation at Bell Labs.

First commercial concentrated solar power plant developed in the 1980s. Today, the largest solar power plants are in USA, in California, Spain and India. One of the largest solar plant is building in UAE.

The term solar panel is used colloquially for a photo-voltaic (PV) module. PV module is an assembly of photo-voltaic cells mounted in a frame work for installation. They use source of energy and generate direct current electricity. A collection of PV modules is called a PV panel, and a system panels is an Array. Array of a PV system supply solar electricity to electrical equipment. The most common application od solar energy collection outside agriculture is solar water heating systems.

Solar farms are large scale of solar installation where photovoltaic (PV) panels, referred to solar panels, or other means of collecting solar energy, like concentrating solar system are used to harvest the suns power. Solar farms are also known as solar parks and solar power stations. They operate as power plants, like a natural gas power plant or other sources of energy generation that have generated electricity for consumers for last century. In most cases instead of providing power to a local and-user like a homeowner or business solar farms provided power to the electric grid and are part of the utility’s energy mix.

The potential solar energy that could be used by humans differ from amount of solar energy present near the surface of the planet, because factors such as geography, time zones, cloud cover and the land surface available to humans limit the amount of solar energy that can be acquire. Solar power is anticipated to become the world’s largest source of electricity by 2050, with solar photovoltaics and concentrated solar power contributing 16 and 11 percent to the global overall consumption.

It is necessary to emphasize that the benefit of installing solar panels for meeting electricity needs is only because a household can drastically reduce electricity bills. It is very important to make a good calculation especially if the goal is complete energy independent from distribution grid. However, only investment in large solar power plants can lead to profit but for their construction, its is necessary to meet technical, administrative and financial conditions and obtain a series of permits and approvals, issued by authorities.

The company Agrikol, in addition to the construction of greenhouses and hothouses, also offers the installation of solar panels. One of a number of such projects, on which the company has worked, is the Malta Sun Generation for Sun Generation Ltd project, in Ta Qali, Malta. The project area was 5800m2.

Project: Malta Sun Generation for Sun Generation Ltd

Location: Ta Qali, Malta

Service: Foundation, construction, glazing

Area: 5800m2

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