What is Solar energy?
Solar energy is a source of energy that depends on the sun. This energy makes it possible to produce electricity from photovoltaic panels or thermal solar power stations, thanks to the light of the sun collected by solar panels (electricity) or thanks to the temperature captured by thermal collectors (heat).
The solar energy is a clean source, emits no greenhouse gases and its raw material can be recycled, the sun although distant more than 150 million kilometers from us, is free, inexhaustible, and available everywhere in the world.
What are the photovoltaic cells?
A photovoltaic cell is an electronic component that generates electricity when exposed to light (photons). It is the photovoltaic effect that is at the source of the phenomenon. The currently obtained hinges on the light of the incident. The electricity generated depends on the lighting; a direct current is provided by the photovoltaic cell.
The most popular photovoltaic cells are made of semiconductors, generally silicon (Si) and more rarely other semiconductors: copper and indium selenide (CuIn (Se) 2 or CuInGa (Se) 2), cadmium telluride (CdTe), etc. They are most frequently sandwiched between two metal contacts in the form of thin plates of about ten centimeters on one side, for a thickness of the order of one millimeter.
The cells are also installed in solar photovoltaic modules or solar panels, depending on the power that is being sought.
Solar and Thermal Panels
There is a difference between the solar thermal panel, which uses the sun to create heat, and the photovoltaic panel, which uses the sun’s rays to generate electricity. In both cases, the energy used is that of the sun.
Thermal Solar Panels
A solar thermal panel, as the name suggests, uses the radiation from the sun to produce heat. The solar panels are thus installed on the roofs, ideally facing due south to take full advantage of the natural heat of the sun. They are fitted with sensors that collect heat from the sun and transfer it to a heat transfer fluid, often brine. The latter then transmits this energy via a heat exchanger to allow, afterward, distribution within a central heating network, for the production of domestic hot water, but also for the operation of a combined solar system.
Photovoltaic Solar panels
A photovoltaic solar panel is made up of photovoltaic cells made of silicon. This chemical element reacts and is stimulated by the photons contained in the sun’s radiation. This stimulation of silicon by photons creates electrons in motion, and therefore, a direct electric current. The latter is then converted into alternating current using an inverter. This is how the sun allows you to create electricity.
The Rise Of Solar Power
Solar power is on the rise. You can see the evidence on rooftops and in the desert, where utility-scale solar plants are popping up. The picture is not all rosy, but if the recent past is any indication, solar power is going to help lead the transition to a carbon-free future, and it might do it faster than we all expected.Source: CNBC
Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Energy
Solar energy is clean. To produce electricity or heat with solar energy you only need the sun rays. There is no need to use fossil fuel in combination with sun rays to produce electricity or heat. You just need a solar energy collector or solar power panels in order to collect solar energy.
The main advantage of solar energy:
Solar energy is cheaper than electric heating. That is another big advantage of solar energy. By just using solar energy you can save a lot of money on heaters. In return, you will get lower electric bills and it also means that you don’t have to maintain heaters.
read: Solar Energy; An Alternative Energy