Tag Archives: solar panels

In a time when everyone seems to be concerned about the environment, the idea of using renewable energy is something really interesting and even exciting.

Being renewable, it gives us a kind of relief for it is something we would not run out of and is therefore sustainable. These are also harvested through very efficient instruments that require lower maintenance compared to the traditional generators. Most of all, it gives off minimal waste products and is therefore more eco-friendly.

The two most common types of renewable energy used today are the solar and wind energy which are both efficient. In fact, there have been existing debates whether which of the two is truly the better technology. The thing with these two is that it is not really a matter of which one is the better one but which one fits  your needs more. Of course, unlike the other types of energy, each of them has its advantages and disadvantages.


Solar Energy

Solar Energy is harvested through the use of solar panels. Unlike wind turbines, solar panels are easier to set up. It requires no wiring and chords that makes it really simple. Also, these solar panels can be placed on roofs are not space-consuming. They are also almost maintenance free. Unlike other means of getting energy, they do not have moving and complicated parts that may wear out as time goes by. Solar panels are very durable that they cannot be affected and even damaged by different weather conditions. It is also easier to add some more solar panels in the system that has already been set up. Solar panels also harness energy while making no noise.

However, despite the zero-hassle energy harvesting process through the solar panels, there are some disadvantages that have to be considered as well. First, solar panels are more expensive compared to wind turbines. It should also be taken into consideration that even though appliances powered by solar energy have batteries that allow charging that ensures the availability of energy even when there is no sun, it may not still be enough since solar panels rely largely on sunlight and due to seasonal variations, sunlight may not be enough at times most especially when it is not summer.


Wind Energywind energy

Unlike the sunlight which may not be available all the time, wind blows all throughout the year. Large-scale turbines are also notable for their efficiency and they can be built in varying locations compared to the solar panels which usually work in sunny regions. Usually, these wind turbines are also cheaper compared to solar panels.

However, unlike the solar panels which can be situated on the roof of establishments, installation of turbines may be problematic in areas surrounded by neighbors as ideally they should be placed in open and high areas so as to avoid any abstraction and to make sure of safety as well. Also, these wind turbines ma not be as durable as the solar panels as its parts may be damaged due to some weather conditions. In this case, it may require maintenance.

Key Takeaway

Both of the two means of getting energy, like what was mentioned earlier, have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages. In the end, the appropriateness of either solar or wind energy for you depends on your location, on your budget, and your needs.


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Do your homework

You really have to do your research and learn what you can before you even consider transitioning to solar power. While solar power has become accessible to consumers, it is still quite a challenging build that requires planning and certain skill sets in order to achieve completion. But with all the hardships, the end result can be very worth it.


Reconsider when in cloudy and rainy locations

If you want to maximize your solar panels, then make sure that you have ample sunlight. Putting them up on the roof of a house that tends to get lots of rain and cloudy skies may not be very cost efficient and gives less sunlight for the setup. Before considering solar power for your home, think carefully on whether you can actually make the most of such an investment.

But with that said, advances in solar power technology has made modern solar panels more efficient than ever, requiring only just a bit of light to gather energy. Even in cloudy days, there is still sunlight, and these new panels can catch them. If you do want these new panels, then do shop carefully so you buy the best ones for your budget.

Don’t believe everything you read

Whatever you read about solar power, despite it being well-known and accessible, may not be all true. Double check your sources and make sure that the information is coming from professionals who know what they are talking about. The wrong information can potentially waste the money you invest in such a project, which is quite discouraging for people who do see the benefits of utilizing solar power in such a scale.

Don’t underestimate your power usage

You may think that once you have the panels down and the wiring and electrical systems hooked up, then you can run everything in the house solely on solar power. While that is the ideal goal, the truth is that your power usage may be higher than you have estimated due to various factors.

Make use of your solar power as merely a supplement to your current power source at best. But with panels nowadays, efficiency is high and you won’t have to worry too much about this.

Consult people who use solar powersunlight

You may have a neighbor who has been using solar power for a long time now, or someone who had just successfully installed solar panels on their roof. If so, you should seek their advice and experiences on how to solar power your own home.

You can take down notes from the costs of materials, what tools are needed, how to do the installation, the various challenges during the process, and if there are ways to make things easier or safer. Their input could be invaluable to your success.

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In July 2012, an airplane with 208 feet wings extending far longer than normal single carriers flew around Europe for more than 24 hours. By day, it ran using the sun; by night, it still ran by the sun – this time using the power reserved from the sun during the day.

This is by far the longest and highest flight by a piloted solar-powered craft. Altitudes reached 28,000 feet above sea level and an average speed of 26 miles per hour. With 12,000 solar panels installed on Solar Impulse (the plane’s name), it glided across Payerne, Switzerland  to Jura Mountains in France.

Wings and Shape

Solar airplanes are light, flat and thin and are usually made up of carbon-fiber pipes for the frame. The wings of solar planes play a crucial role in the lifting part. These planes are often shaped like a “V” or an “X” as this orientation prevents the plane from rolling During steady flight, the airflow due to its relative speed creates a force that maintains the airplane in the air – compensating the weight and drag by propellers.

How Solar Panels Are Usedsolar powered plane

Solar powered air crafts use solar panels to collect solar energy for immediate use,b remaining energy collected for night flight. These are the heart of the planes because they cover a huge stretch of the plane. Not only are they thin (a few millimeters thick), they are also efficient and inexpensive. The solar panels cover the wings, tail and/or fuselage of the plane and convert light or solar energy into electrical energy. This device is called “Maximum Power Point Tracker”, it ensures that the solar panels are working at their maximum efficiency. How much energy is absorbed depends on the sun’s irradiance and the craft’s elevation in the sky. During the night when no power comes from the solar panels, the charged batteries provide power to the plane until the new cycle starts.

Carbon Emissions

Because solar powered air crafts do not depend on the atmosphere for producing power, no harmful exhaust gas are emitted. Solar energy is used to supply power to the propulsion system and onboard instruments. To do this, the aircraft must maintain a fine balance between collecting and consuming energy.

While flying with the help of the sun is not yet ready to replace commercial jet transportation – a few years might all be needed to make this into a reality.

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