Where is Solar Energy Found and Who Discovered Solar Energy?
The History of Solar Energy Technology
The advantages and benefits of solar energy are very clear with a rising increase in the use of solar energy as an alternate power source. However, who discovered solar energy and its historical past is not commonly known. It is often an assumption that the energy crisis that occurred in the 1970’s which found consumers waiting in long lines just for gasoline, was what generated the movement towards solar energy. But this is simply not true. There had been a great deal of interest in developing solar energy for commercial use throughout the first part of the 20th century, the progress was simply slow and the technology not well understood. Upon further research, it is easy to see that the history of who discovered solar energy and its uses dates back thousands of years.
Satellite systems provided the initial practical application for photovoltaic solar cells. For its time, the photovoltaic solar cells were extraordinary, providing the necessary electrical energy for the Vanguard I satellite that operated successfully until the system was shut down in 1964. The first motor to run on solar energy was done by Mouchout, who discovered solar energy could also power a steam engine.
Solar Energy and Technological Developments
The two basic forms of solar energy used today include solar electric energy and solar thermal energy. Typically solar electric energy uses the sun’s rays to generate electricity with the use of photovoltaic solar cells. Solar thermal energy uses the energy of the sun to heat liquids such as water or even glycol.
Many believe solar technology to be one of the most exciting technologies being developed in the world and aren’t worried about who discovered solar energy. They want to know how solar energy can be used for commercial purposes. It is especially exciting when compared with the growing expense and falling suppliers of typical energy sources like fossil fuel. The incredible benefits of solar technology are limitless in developing worlds and modern societies.
The Future of Solar Energy
Solar Energy and Future Advancements
The original person who discovered solar energy probably did not imagine it would reach personal use to heat homes and generated enough electricity to power homes and cars. The impressive history of solar energy is only one step towards the incredibly bright future of this unique technology that will change the way every day consumers conduct their lives. The continuous advancements in solar technology research has only increased the interest in to making the newest technologies available to the general public. Even with today’s solar energy technology, homeowners have the ability to have solar energy systems installed with very little reliance on centralized power stations. The person who discovered solar energy could not have imagined the wide spread use of solar technology.
The use of solar energy has multiple benefits. A solar energy source saves consumers money after the initial investment in to the panel infrastructure. Money savings is a bigger driver for consumers than understanding who discovered solar energy or its technical details. Solar energy is also environmentally friendly, vastly reducing the amount of hazardous gases and fuels that are spilled in to the environment. This harmful pollution threatens the global climate. A consumer can benefit substantially by educating themselves on who discovered solar energy, its uses and technologies in today’s society and its availability for general public use.
What Is Solar Energy?
Solar energy has been topical for a long time, but there has been little and certainly not enough done to educate us and to help us understand what the different energy types are.
Solar energy comes in two forms. The energy capacity is either ‘collected’ through photovoltaic or thin film cells or via thermal collectors. The photovoltaic or thin film uses the suns energy into electricity. Solar thermal energy is completely different. This uses the heat of the sun to generate heat for us such as water heaters, pool heaters or general homes and buildings, it does not however, convert it into electricity for use on other appliances.
Why Do We Need To Change?
There are many theories about what is happening environmentally across the globe, but here are some of the facts which are worthy of respect:
- Fossil fuels will run out
- Fossil fuel prices are prone to fluctuation and with the current global economic situation as well as the social issues in come of the countries which control fossil fuels; the prices are more likely to rise than fall.
- Fossil fuels produce pollutants, which affect our air quality.
- Breathing related illness are increasing and more and more children are suffering with this.
- We only have two options for the future; renewable or alternative energy sources.
- Nuclear seems to be the most likely replacement of fossil fuels, but with Chernobyl still in our memories and watching the consequences of the Fukushima plant, there is clearly still progress needed.
- Nuclear energy is an alternative energy and not a renewable.
- Renewable energies will never run out, they are, as their name suggests, naturally renewed.
We cannot rely on the future of fossil fuels and at the moment the confidence in nuclear power has been undermined – so we need to understand our options and know that now is the time to act.
Understanding Your Energy Choices (solar power category)
As explained above there are different types of energy available to us in this time of change. Below is a list of the different energy types:
- Solar heat/thermal
- Wind power
- Solar photovoltaic / thin film
This list is everything, renewable, alternative and fossil! Globally we will be dependent of a range of these; there is not one single source suitable.
But for your home your choices are limited to: solar photovoltaic, solar thermal and of course traditional fossil driven electricity from your local grid.
Swapping To Solar Panels (solar panels category)
People have built homes which are completely run from renewable energies. Unfortunately these homes are expensive and the concepts work, but cannot be simply transferred to some of our current properties.
However, what we can all do is start to replace some of our usage with solar energy. Solar panels for the home are very advanced and they are available to all of us now.
The original solar panel installation was a problem for many homes as the structures of some buildings was simply not suitable. This issue has been resolved as we now have the third generation of solar panels available which are much more suitable for the average property.
The other area which has put lots of us off solar power was the hugely high costs involved in converting. This has been over come in several ways. Firstly, there is less adaption of our homes needed. Secondly the development of the solar industry means that this technology is more efficient as specifically developed for the home. The final change is that governments want us to change and there are now grants available in most areas to help the transition away from fossil fuels.
So how do you actually get your solar power working? (solar panel kits category)
There are three basic routes to converting some or all of your home usage to solar power.
Firstly you can DIY it – yup – you can actually get all the bits and Do It Yourself. This is obviously the cheapest way. (And I am sure that you could use the skills learnt afterwards to help those around you).
The second option is the half way one – you choose and buy your solar kit and then you choose from a list of registered installation companies and individuals to fit it all up for you.
The third and most expensive, but easiest route, is to chose a company and pay for them to review your home, work out the best system for your property and for them to install this. Quite a lot of cents – but less grey hairs and general stress.
The Technical Bit – What Is Photovoltaic? (photovoltaic category)
Photovoltaic is the technology behind converting solar heat into electricity. When people refer to solar electricity is generated by the photovoltaic system. Photovoltaic technology is used in more than 100 countries and is the fastest growing power generating technology.
When the sun hits a solar photovoltaic cell the photons of light activate the electrons and make them move, creating an energy which is converted into electricity. (A summary of years of research and billions of dollars – into one simple sentence!!!)
You will also hear and have read above about thin film panels. These are also photovoltaic. The silicon inside a thin film, essential for the photovoltaic solar energy success is main difference between the traditional panels and these.
The thin films are as the name suggests, thin. This means that they are considerably lighter and therefore much more usable on the average building.
They are slightly less efficient and slightly more expensive, but in the 5 years leading up to 2009 solar power was averaging an annual increase of around 60 percent. This increase is primarily due to the advances such as the thin film photovoltaic solar panels. So we now have a access to a technology which was previously unusable to the majority of us.
Solar Panel Kits Guide
The creation of solar panel kits means that we can all have solar power in our homes.
There was a time, not very long ago, when getting solar power was a long and drawn out business – and an expensive one as well.
One of the things which has brought this into line with the public requirements and budgets is the development of solar panel kits.
The solar panel kit is not the perfect solution if you are converting your entire property to solar energy. If this is your aim then you may be best getting a more specific design.
But for most of us the solar panel kit is a great solution.
If you are going to do it yourself then you are best of specifically targeted DIY Solar Panel Kits. These are more comprehensive and do not expect you to have an array of basic parts to drawn on in order to complete your installation. There are a huge range of solar kits specifically designed for those who are new to solar power. This is a good, cheap way to get you on the solar system. The other advantage of the DIY solar kits is that they allow you to increase your solar usage as you understand more about it. Perhaps you want to start with adding solar heating to your pool, solar power to your RV? These are fairly simple and straight forward projects which are also a great introduction to solar power. (If you have kids you can also get kits to make solar powered remote control cars – and there is nothing more fun than racing cars which you built yourself).
If you are not looking to do the work yourself then you have to consider your solar kit a little more carefully. If you are paying for installation then the range of kits available is much greater.
It is worth considering the kit and the installation separately to start with. I would suggest that you start by deciding which of the kits you think will best suit your needs. Then take these ideas to the different manufacturers and sales offices in your area and see who can fit something similar and at what cost. Remember that you will be speaking to salesmen. These salesmen want you to buy their product – so you can negotiate – in fact you should negotiate.
If you are committed to spending money on a solar installation then it is in the interest of every solar outlet in your area to want your business and to get you to recommend them to your friends.
When there is a craze – for a car or a toy – the item will sell itself. The problem with solar energy is that many people are still only just realizing quite how accessible solar power has become. This means that anyone getting on the band wagon now is in a good position to negotiate a great deal. There are a lot of resources being pumped into renewable energy sources and in many cases you are the target market for these funds.
So the solar panel kit is going to be your savior. This is how you are going to get started with solar power.