Solar Energy Technology
The use of solar energy has increased exponentially in recent years, thanks to a surge in the use of renewable and sustainable sources of energy. Solar energy is harnessed in two distinct ways: the first is through the use of photovoltaic cells while the second is through the use of thermal systems. The use of photovoltaic cells converts the sun’s light energy to electricity which can then be used on both small and large scale. Thermal solar energy on the other hand, is obtained by trapping the sun’s heat and using this energy to power different systems.
The role of photovoltaics in harnessing solar energy
Photovoltaic energy in the solar sector typically revolves around the use of cells on a solar panel to produce electrical energy. The advantage of this technology is that the electrical energy produced is not only easy to use, it can also be stored for transmission. What’s more, the solar panels containing the photovoltaic cells can be made from an array of materials found globally. This has increased efforts in recycling the panels as well as improving sustainable sources of energy.
Technological advancements in the use of photovoltaic cells
Technology has led to remarkable improvements in the use of solar energy. Nowhere is this more evident than photovoltaic energy (abbreviated PV). One of the most fundamental improvements in PV solar technology is the use of material that is readily available. For the longest time, Silicon was used to produce PV solar cells, but this has since changed in favor of Copper and Selenium. Both materials are not only highly effective, they are also less costly that Silicon.
Presently, researchers in the solar energy sector are looking forward to the production of nano photovoltaic solar cells. The nano PV cells are projected to be up to six times more efficient than conventional solar cells. Better efficiency improves energy production as well as helps in the conservation of the environment by steering clear of non-renewable energy sources. Although nano solar technology is yet to be rolled out on a commercial scale, it is evident that these advancements will bring about more efficient solar panel use.
Other forms of solar energy technology that have interested players in this industry are High Concentration Photovoltaic (HCP) Concentrated Solar Power (CSP). HCP uses a high number of lenses that allow the sun’s energy to be focused at a central place. CSP uses the same principle, but is different because it traps solar energy using the panel’s cells before heating a functional fluid. This fluid is used to drive turbines and power different systems. Australia and Spain are two countries that have made use of CSP solar technology quite effectively.
Both HCP and CSP technologies hold great promise for solar energy use across the world. With more people realizing the importance of conserving the environment by using sustainable energy sources, it is only a matter of time before solar energy is the choice way to power up life globally. As it is, these technological advancements have created excellent ground work for further research and development. For more details about solar panels you can check out this website.