Solar Power Resources

Solar Power - The Basics

Solar power is a non-polluting, renewable, completely free and abundantly available energy source, and for many years now experts have been putting their minds to the question of how to best and most efficiently make use of it. Here are some basic points about solar power and about how it is being used at present.

Solar power is very versatile. By using photo voltaic cells it can be converted into electricity. It can be used directly to heat water. When it is used this way it is known as 'passive solar' using it to convert to electricity is known as 'active solar'. Solar energy is received in a weak form which does make it somewhat limiting. If we are to use it effectively then we have to discover a way of harnessing the power and concentrating it.

In its passive state, solar power has been used for centuries. It has been used for lighting fires, heating water and drying wood. Today, solar water heaters are widely used in places where the sun is available all year round. Addtitionally, there are in existence solar power plants which harness the sun's energy and concentrate it enough to generate electricity. These power plants are very economical and useful in remote areas where conventional electricity plants are not feasible. It is even being used in satellites and space crafts.

Recently, much interested has been generated in the idea of using solar power as a means to run power motor vehicles. This is still very much at an experimental stage. The huge amount of power required by a car's engine would mean using very large solar panels. This is impractical due to the size and fragility of the panels. There is also the problem that when the sun is not shining, they wouldn't run for very long. In this instance, we are along way from using solar power to run our cars.

Solar power is increasing in demand, however, it is not widely used. Although the technology is here, the cost of converting solar power into energy is prohibitive. However, with the continuing rising costs of fuel, it could become a viable alternative in the not too distant future. As more people become concerned on the environmental impact of using fuel, more will be looking for more greener and cleaner energy. As this demand increases manufacturers will find it more feasible to produce solar powered devices. -- About the Author If you are interested to find out more about solar energy then visit Paul Wood's website for more interesting information about solar energy uses
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