Flexible Solar Panel Manufacturing
Solar power has been progressively becoming more and more popular over the past few decades. Countries and companies alike have seen the potential in the technology and spent lots of time, effort and money to develop the technology into a technology usable by many all around the globe. The investment poured into this technology has seen the efficiency of solar panels increase drastically and the price per metre squared of solar panels to plummet. This has allowed solar panels to be profitable in many situations. Whether you are a power plant manager who uses a field full of solar panels to generate and sell electricity, or an individual homeowner who uses the panels to offset some of their household energy usage. This technology is a great source of renewable energy and is absolutely crucial to the phasing out of unclean energy sources, replacing these with cleaner, greener sources of energy.
There is a reason solar is such a promising source of renewable energy. The amount of energy in the form of solar radiation (visible and infrared light), that is energy emitted from our sun, is extraordinarily high when compared to our existing sources of energy. Within the space of a year, it is estimated that the surface of the earth is struck with approximately 23,000 TeraWatt years of energy! Now I do understand this is a difficult number to get your head around, after all there is not much reference of such large numbers.
We will first have a look at how much power the world uses in a year. All of the world, with all of its people and industrial activity included, uses only 18.5 TeraWatt Years of energy over the space of a year! So with the solar energy that lands on earth you could meet the world's energy needs 1,243 times over! This is great news for solar, especially when you look at the amount of energy generation possible from other, finite sources. It is estimated that the most plentiful, finite energy resource available on the planet: coal; a heavily polluting fuel could, if all of the coal on the earth was burned, produce 830 TeraWatt Years.
So the main question involved in the solar energy industry is: how can this energy be collected and converted into electricity? Well there are a number of solutions to this problem, however the most popular by far is the use of solar panels. Simply put, these panels work by utilising the Photovoltaic effect to make electrons in the specially selected material of the panel move when they are hit by photons (waves of light). Movement of electrons is more commonly known as electricity, hence power is generated! If you'd like to learn more about how solar panels work please do follow this link: Basic Steps in Solar Energy Generation and Transimmition