Only after watching the movie 220;Race the Sun” i came to know about Solar Energy. It was a story about low- income and under achieving Hawaiian students encouraged by their teacher to join the Solar Car race. In the movie, a car shaped like a cockroach and covered with solar panels used the sun’s rays as an alternative energy source to run the car.
The energy poduced from sun’s light and heat is known as solar energy. Solar energy is a free and unlimited source of energy. There are no air and water pollution caused about by using solar energy. But there is still some impacts on the environment although indirect.
The efficiency of solar power for homes can greatly be increased with the use of daylight systems. It is used to provide interior illumination replacing the artificial lighting. The different types of Daylight system include Sawtooth roofs, Light Shelfs, Skylights and Light Tubes. Daylight systems when they are properly implemented can reduce lighting-related energy consumption by 25 percent.
The light from the sun can be converted into solar thermal technologies, and can be used for the purpose of heating water, space heating, space cooling and process heat generation. Solar energy can also be used to distil water and make saline or brackish water potable or drinkable.
Also sunlight can be converted into electricity using photovoltaics or PV. PV has been mainly used to power small and medium-sized things like a calculator powered by a single solar cell. There are homes powered by photovoltaics. Using solar energy for water and space heating is the most widely use application of solar energy. While ventilation and solar air heating is also growing in popularity.
With all the benefits of using solar energy, there is still a downside of the solar energy efficiency. Its disadvantage being that it does not work during night time. The benefits of setting up a solar power plant exceeds much more than the initial high cost of setting it up.