The danger of climate change in the near future is something that needs to be taken a bit more serious, along with over uses of our resources. Just take at the water situation in California. It is very surprising there isn’t more panic in that state. There needs to be better management at state and federal levels on resources and output from industry. There will be a point where it may be hard to revert to what it was before. But it seems in today’s society it is all about the short gain.
United States and Solar Energy
In early July, Obama had an announcement on increasing the amount of solar energy used in the nation. The goal is to get communities and business access to solar energy easier through help from the federal government via the state government. The program will initiate 300 mega watts of solar energy throughout twenty states with over 250 solar projects. This will in turn create jobs within this new industry with expert training.
An interesting stat on energy in America is that solar energy makes up only on percent of all source of electricity use. The fact that the sun is free and unlimited source of clean energy makes it more enticing. A bigger world stat or fact that one hour of the sun energy if harvested fully, is equal by the amount used in 1 year by all of planet earth.
As of today, there are 3 generations of solar panels. The first generation model’s account for 90 percent of production and has matured into a solid system but still has inefficiency in absorbing efficiently the sun rays. The main material is crystalline silicon, which is recognizable worldwide as the catalyst. The other materials are glass and plastic basically used in the cover. The materials especially silicon, have come down in price and has made affordable for many.
The second generation is made of materials that are toxic and somewhat rare. These are thin-film cells that absorb sun rays at 10 and up to hundred times more than your typical silicon. Extremely thin and flexible, these pieces are as thin as compared to a piece of hair. Based on percentage, it is 20 percent more and has the potential to reach higher according to experts.
The goal of the 3rd generation solar cells is to be more efficient and most important low cost so it can deploy at a larger scale. The materials used are similar to the second generation but includes organic, dye and quantum dot semiconductor. The dye helps to absorb sun light at low light.
With the advent of solar cell systems for rooftops and solar farms, you cannot forget about the smaller scale products for home use. Things like solar chargers for your phone, solar flashlights, and other lighting. Some of the top solar path-lights run entirely off the sun and the LED lights are perfect for lighting up the garden walkways. The benefits are that they are no wires, cheap, and some even have sensors that light up when darkness falls. You never have to touch them.
When you think of energy, you think of electricity that powers all your electronics. In some parts of the world or country, using this energy comes at a cost and we mean dollars from electrical bills.
Recently solar power has come down in price because of newer technology and more consumers are interested more in purchasing them. We have come a long way from it being expensive back in 2010, where only people with moola had them.
Another aspect of using solar energy is that you have to be in a sunny area. Places like Southern California and Arizona are a hotspot and they are increasing in numbers on rooftops. Farmers are also implementing them as especially with all the power they need to run their farms.
The U.S government is helping perpetuate the growth of solar power by implanting policy that improves the availability of this technology to low to middle income families. The focus on these policies is a concept of shared energy especially for those who live in places with little rooftop space.
Industries Uses of Solar
Large industries like Facebook, Google and Apple are creating solar farms in desserts to help run their massive servers. These servers eat a lot up of electricity to run their databases, so cost is high. But with the help from solar farms, cost is less.
In Japan, many golf courses are being converted to farms of solar panels and some recent images have shown that it is actually aesthetic pleasing. Florida and Southern California should take cue because of the drought and lack of water, as golf courses are notorious for using a ton of water for upkeep.
A new technology has been brewing on the campus of UCLA by chemists that may bring a revolution to how solar panel harness the sun’s energy. Today’s technology can only store solar energy for milli seconds, and in a way still the technology is still in its infancy and cost and efficiency is not there.
This new technique by the UCLA’s chemist supposedly is able to store solar energy for weeks. The learnt and study how plants harness the power of the sun but a process that everybody knows, “Photosynthesis”.
This would be incredible as this could lead to a new revolution on how to be green conscious. The efficiency is from a new inner working design of the cells. The goal is to able to separated the charges, negative and positive, for a long period so it can be charged. The longer the separation, the more efficient of holding the solar energy. The propose working design, has intricate skinny and long spaghetti like tubes with nodes(like meatballs) that are strategically placed. These nodes are officially called fullerene and act as a catalyst for electrons to jump back and forth while not touching the spaghetti called the Polymers.
The goal of today’s solar equipment is to be made into plastic rather than silicon(more expensive). You are probably thinking plastic? That isn’t green. I believe as long it is reusable for many generations and recyclable. I like to note that the chemists do not mention what material will be used.