Solar Energy is radiant light and heat from the sun. It can be used in two different ways, as a heating source and as an energy source. It can generate heat, lighting and electricity. Sunlight travels through the upper parts of the earth's atmosphere. Once this sunlight reaches the surface of the earth, it must be captured so it can be turned into an usable energy source. At the earth's surface, it is called infrared radiation. It is here that the radiation is used as chemical energy by the plants in the form of photosynthesis. Human beings use that in the form of heat energy.
Some positive aspects are that in solar energy, it can convert into other forms of energy like electrical energy or light energy. Also, solar panels give off no pollution. In addition, the production of energy from the use of fossil and some renewable fuels can be noisy, yet solar energy produces electricity very quietly. One of the great pros of solar energy is the ability to harness electricity in remote locations that are not linked to a national grid. A prime example of this is in space, where satellites are powered by high efficiency solar cells.
Some drawbacks or cons of solar panels for solar energy is that at night and cloudy days they burn natural gas to boil the water so they can continue to make electricity. Another problem is that it’s very costly. Also, solar energy is the initial cost of solar cells. Currently, prices of highly efficient solar cells can be above $1000, and some households may need more than one. This makes the initial installation of solar panels very costly.
The solar thermal method uses energy from the sun to directly generate heat. Solar panels are commonly used to collect and capture the sun’s heat and transfer it for water and space heating in buildings. PV systems convert sunlight directly into electricity. “Photo” refers to light and “voltaic” to electricity. A PV cell is made of a semiconductor material, usually crystalline silicon, which absorbs sunlight. Solar panels are usually used in places that receive sunlight almost all year round, like the equator. It may not be so common because it costs a lot of money to buy the solar panels, even though after a while you will get your money back from the energy saved in the solar panels. About 43% of the sunlight is converted into energy all around the world.
~Solar Radiation brought to you by Science Through the Eyes of Jazzyfizzle