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A Quick Guide to Solar Energy: How It Works

Did you know that in the last decade, the solar energy industry has had a yearly growth rate of 42%?

Within the last decade, solar energy has been a hot topic. The sun is a powerful and natural source of energy, and harnessing its power through solar panels can be an excellent way to live more sustainably. Solar energy can be an affordable way to help reduce your carbon footprint and save some money.

As the world is constantly changing, more and more people are interested in being environmentally conscious. The concept may seem like something out of a science fiction novel, but it’s very real, efficient, and abundant. How much do you know about the different types of renewable energies?

Read on to learn more about solar energy: how it works.

Solar Energy: How it Works

Solar energy is the process by which sunlight is collected and turned into usable forms of energy that can power anything, from electronics, to homes or businesses, small and large. There are two different types of solar energy: photovoltaics (PV) and concentrating solar-thermal power (CSP). PV relies on converting photons in the light spectrum to an electric current, while CSP uses thermal technologies for capturing heat.

Photovoltaics is the process of taking the energy harnessed from the sun in solar panels through the PV cells in the panel. The energy collected creates a movement of charged particles inside the cell, creating an electrical field, which then flows to produce electricity.

Concentrating solar-thermal power uses mirrors to focus and turn sunlight into heat, which can then be used for electricity or stored. This type of system is typically found in large-scale facilities like coal-fired plants that produce more than 1000 MWs (megawatts) worth of energy each year.

The use of these systems is then merged together to be used as a renewable energy source in a variety of things, including businesses and homes. Often times there are no upfront costs and zero commitment. Going green could be well worth it as there may be tax incentives for adding solar energy to your home, and you may be able to save thousands of dollars on your solar system.

Solar Energy is the Future

There’s no doubt, solar energy will be a major player in providing sustainable energy production in the future and for generations to come. By 2050 solar power is projected to increase up to 45% of the nation’s electricity supply. It has sustainable environmental benefits, doesn’t emit greenhouse gases, and uses natural resources to produce clean power.

It’s also highly cost-effective and reduces dependence on foreign oil. By using the sun as an alternative source of fuel, people can easily become less dependent on traditional sources of electricity such as coal or natural gas, which means a more stable supply.

For those who want clean and renewable energy, solar panels are an excellent choice. Did you enjoy reading about solar energy: how it works? If so, check out our website for more exciting topics!

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