Solar energy is becoming more widespread and is catching ground in covering the global energy needs and, consequently, in each of our lives. There is, however, a number of truths about the energy from the sun more or less known, things that – why not? – could be good reasons for choosing this alternative.
1. The first was Da Vinci.
Solar energy is not a “breakthrough” of the XXI century but it was used since the fifteenth century. Leonardo Da Vinci conceptualized the idea of solar energy at that time when, using a concave mirror, he was directing the sun's energy to heat water.
2. More energy than we need
The sun is a true blessing if we consider the available energy resources. The sunlight which is reaching the earth gives us – in just an hour – enough energy for everyone to use for a year. Every day, about 120,000 terawatts (TW) of electric power are offered by the sun. That, given the fact that over a year the world only uses 15 TW of energy.
3. The largest photovoltaic park in the world
The largest photovoltaic park in the world is in the Mojave Desert of California. The park provides about 90% of the amount of solar energy used in the world.
4. Not all of the panels are the same
There are two types of solar panels: solar panels and PV. Solar thermal panels convert sunlight into energy and works by absorbing heat. The water then flows through it to heat it for domestic purposes.
5. More and more people use solar energy
In the last 50 years, the solar panel production increased overwhelmingly. Especially in the last decade. For example, the growth rate reached its peak in 2008-2009 when residential solar panels have doubled the production of solar electricity, while solar market has grown almost double.
6. Using solar energy means less pollution
Using solar panels means zero air and water pollution and zero emission of greenhouse gases.
7. More energy efficiency
From the total of the absorbed energy by the solar panels, only 15% can be converted to be used. However, do not be fooled by this detail. For example, Australia receives 15,000 times more solar energy than it could ever be used. Thus, even with a conversion rate of 15%, we are given 2,000 times more energy than we need.
8. Saving the planet
There is no secret that solar energy is the way for a safer future. Solar panels can produce 1 kilowatt (kW) of solar energy to replace the burning of about 170 pounds of coal or 300 cm. of methane.
9. A game?
At first, photovoltaic cells were used to power the electrical toys. Today, we can say for sure that there's no game. Solar energy has rapidly become an overwhelming industry.
10. Cheaper than you can imagine
The installation of solar panels implies much lower costs than in the past, with a decrease up to 40 percent of the price. Moreover, the certificates provided by the Government are incentives for the production and development of solar energy.