Solar Energy Basics

Solar energy is the energy, heat or electricity produced directly using the energy radiated from the Sun to the Earth.

Each time the Sun forward onto land in 1367 watts per m². Taking into account the fact that the Earth is a sphere (and therefore the rays often angled) which also rotates, the solar radiation on the Earth's surface on average 24 hours and 4 Seasons at European latitudes of about 200 watts per square meter.

The amount of solar energy arriving on Earth's soil is so huge, about a thousand times greater than all the energy used by humanity as a whole, but scattered in the sense that it is necessary to collect energy from vast areas in order to have significant quantities , and rather difficult to convert into easily exploitable energy (mainly electricity) with acceptable efficiencies.

To exploit it are needed products generally high cost that make solar energy much expensive compared to other methods of generating energy.

The development of technologies that can make economic use of solar energy is an area of active research but, for now, had no revolutionary results.

There are two main technologies for residential solar power that transform energy into electricity from the sun:

  • The solar thermal panel (or heat collector) uses sunlight to heat a liquid with special characteristics (water and antifreeze), contained in its internal transfers heat through a heat exchanger, water contained in a tank accumulation
  • The photovoltaic panel uses the properties of particular elements to produce electricity when requested by the light.
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