Use Solar Energy to Make Electricity

You can create electricity from solar energy in two ways, photovoltaic PV and solar thermal. PV uses sunlight and chemical reactions electricity to produce. Solar thermal uses the sun’s heat to generate steam, which in turn rotates the turbine to generate electricity.

This is called high-temperature solar thermal energy. Medium temperature solar thermal captures solar heat water or air to heat, but do not create power. Other experimental technologies to create electricity from solar energy, develops, but for the time being the two primary systems.

Use Solar Energy to Make Electricity

Install photovoltaic panels to capture sun’s light energy. PV panels can be installed on roofs of houses and other buildings, or can be set up in large field. In order to power house or building, multiple PV panels—called modules—must be set up.

Although cost of PV technology is decreasing, technology can be expensive, especially when considering cons of PV systems. main problem of system is that in order to create electricity from sun’s rays, sun must be shining. Nighttime and cloudy days make it impossible to harness sun’s energy using PV panels.

In order to make these systems more efficient, better batteries must be developed to store electricity created for later use. Utilize solar-thermal technologies. Unlike PV technology, it is difficult to use high-temperature solar-thermal for single home or building.

Primarily, high-temperature solar-thermal is used in large scales, for instance as power plant. High-temperature solar-thermal systems will use many huge mirrors, or parabolic trough systems, to focus sun’s rays on single point. These heliostatic mirrors rotate to constantly face sun.

mirrors heat large amount of specialized oil that heats water to create steam. This steam then moves turbine, which creates electricity. Power plants such as this are currently in use in Southern California’s Mojave Desert and Seville, Spain.

This system has potential to create hundreds of megawatts of electricity. power station in Seville, Spain also stores heat in huge tanks, so overnight heat can continue to spin turbines and create electricity. These power plants are also referred to as central receiver system or solar thermal power plant.

Use parabolic-dish systems to create electricity from sun. Although this technology is still in experimental phase, it may soon reach commercial status and create electricity on large scales. Parabolic dish systems are similar to high-temperature, solar-thermal energy, but parabolic dish systems heat gaseous hydrogen, helium or liquid sodium to create pressurized gas or steam to move turbine and create electricity.

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How to Use Solar Energy to Make Electricity

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