The Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Energy

solar panel

The sun is an inexhaustible source of energy that you can put in your favor.

What are the frequent uses and how to join to save and take care of the environment.

The sun has been emitting solar radiation for 5 billion years and it is estimated that it has not yet reached 50% of its existence. The uses of solar energy that we can take advantage of are many and growing and it is important to start incorporating them because it is an inexhaustible resource: the amount of energy that the king star emanates on Earth every day is ten thousand times greater than the entire planet consume in 24 hours Knowing the possibilities can help you join the trend.

solar panels

What is solar energy
To know the different uses of solar energy in the world, it is first key to understand what it is and what its advantages and disadvantages are. Let’s go by parts.

The term solar energy refers to the use of energy that comes from the Sun. It is a type of clean, renewable and inexhaustible energy that, thanks to various devices, we can capture and transform into thermal and electrical energy for later use in lights, heaters , swimming pools, etc.

Uses of solar energy
The uses and applications are increasingly wide and diverse. The most important are:

Solar lighting
It is one of the most common and also one of the easiest ways to improve efficiency in energy consumption in homes, buildings, clubs and others. Unlike traditional options, solar lighting does not require any configuration. They are wireless and have become a good option for gardens, courtyards and public spaces.

Solar heating
Solar heaters take advantage of the sun’s energy and transform it into thermal energy through the use of liquid or air.

Solar heating systems can be passive or active. In the first case they are systems that use natural circulation, while, in active systems, pumps are used to circulate water and generate heat.

Solar panels for home
More and more homes are turning to solar panels to reduce electricity consumption and, at the same time, contribute to the care of the environment. For those who do not know what a solar panel is , we can summarize that it is a device that uses the sun’s energy to generate heat or electricity . According to these two purposes, we can distinguish between solar collectors, which produce hot water (usually for domestic use) using thermal solar energy, and photovoltaic panels, which generate electricity from the solar radiation that affects the photovoltaic cells of the panel.

How do solar panels work ?

Basically, the panel is a pickup element. It is a device that captures solar radiation and transforms it into useful energy.

Solar water heater: solar hot water tanks
It is one of its most widespread applications. Solar hot water tanks or solar collectors use water as a method for thermal transfer. There are different sizes and allow to heat water safely and efficiently, without resorting to the use of gas or electricity. They are used to take a shower, wash dishes, underfloor heating systems or radiators and for industrial processes. They get temperatures of 50 ° C in winter and 80 ° C in summer.

Photovoltaic solar panels
Photovoltaic solar panels are the best known and serve to generate electricity through the photovoltaic effect, a cousin of the photoelectric effect for which Albert Einstein won the Nobel Prize. They are used both in large solar parks and in home installations.

Solar energy: Advantages and Disadvantages

The main advantages of using solar energy are:

It does not pollute: being much cleaner than that derived from fossil fuels, it has low environmental impact. It does not release harmful substances into the atmosphere.
It is an inexhaustible source: it is a renewable energy that comes from an inexhaustible source.
Low Cost: at the beginning the purchase and installation of the panels can be a bit expensive but, over time, the expense is amortized because the electricity bill goes down.
Accessible to rural areas: although it is difficult to move and install, it is ideal for bringing electricity to rural, mountainous areas and islands where power lines do not reach.
Reuse of panels: in addition to not producing waste, solar panels can be recycled by 95%. This implies that it has low consequences of environmental impact.
Other advantages : they are easy to maintain, do not take up space inside the houses because they can be installed on the roofs and, at a more macro level, it is a sector that promoted employment growth, by manufacturing cells, panels, etc.

The main disadvantages are:
Aesthetics: the panels on the roofs of the houses or in the fields and gardens may be not very aesthetic but, if we put it in value, it is a minor detail compared to its great advantages.
Cost of installation: the expenses are important at the time of adding this system to the home, but, over time, it is compensated when the electricity bill is reduced.
Low performance: it is a major disadvantage. The existing panels today yield approximately 33%, when a turbine of a wind system reaches a yield of 50%.
Discontinuity in service: both during the night and on cloudy days we do not have the sun to charge the panels and the existing battery system so far does not maintain a large reserve capacity.