Question: Solar energy
Solar energy and related renewable energy projects are on the rise from last few decades. The technologies like solar and wind power which experienced limited focus and attention in the previous ears have been experiencing high growth because of the concept of the national interest towards increasing the energy efficiency, increasing the domestic energy production, reduction towards the dependence on fossil fuels and curbing the greenhouse gas emissions. Other concerns relating to fossil fuels also include security as well as economic issues resulting from the dependency of the nation on other countries for the fuel imports.
Renewable technology being more affordable has become the choice of various individuals and nations. The countries adopting to the renewable energy should include the expected lifespan of the equipment, cost of initial equipment and installation and finally the availability of renewable energy sources in the region into their checklist.
Purpose of Statement
The report aims to present a qualitative analysis of the benefits and history of solar energy for the evaluation of the proposed utility-scale solar energy project. The various solar-powered equipment have been mentioned in the study for evaluating the potential impact of solar developments. The paper aims to provide guidance towards the selection of the best utility-scale solar facilities in the desired and appropriate locations which can help in allowing the solar energy generation as well as the conservation of the ecosystem. The prime purpose of the paper is to highlight the concept of sustainable development so as to prevent our environment and ecosystem for future generations.
In order to fulfill the purpose, the paper covers an introduction to solar energy and how it is a useful alternative source of electricity. Further, the study encompasses the various solar-powered system in educating us about the various ways solar energy can be helpful to human lives.
The case study is organized as follows:
Chapter 1 gives an overview about the importance of solar power and its history.
Chapter 2 gives a brief on the solar water heating system and its functioning
Chapter 3 gives a brief on the solar energy collector and its functioning
Chapter 4 gives a brief on the solar thermal power system and its functioning.
Chapter 1: The Greatest History of Solar Energy
The history of the solar energy started way back in 1860s which was driven by the fact that coal was expected to be scarce. But it was in early 20th century that the development of the solar energy and related technology came into play due to the increasing availability, utility and economy of the coal and petroleum. The development of a rooftop solar and the utility-scale photovoltaic power stations were seen to increase to the high demand and supply issues of the oil as well as natural gas, improvement of the economic position of the PV and the global warming concerns. (Sarver, T., Al-Qaraghuli, A., & Kazmerski, L. L., 2013).
Below are the various solar powered utility-scale equipment:
Chapter 2: The Solar Water Heating System
The solar water heating system are also known as the solar domestic hot water systems which is a cost effective method for generation of the hot water. As they are solar powered they can be used in any climate. These solar water heating system are equipped with a storage tank and solar collectors. These solar water heating systems are of two types namely active and passive. The active ones have a circulating pump and control whereas the passive ones lack these. The household water is pumped using the collector in the direct circulation systems whereas the water is circulated in a non-freezing, heat-transfer fluids using the collectors and a heat exchanger. This heated water is then used for the household and other purposes. (Fanney, A. H., & Dougherty, B. P.,1994).
Chapter 3: The solar energy collector
The device used for collecting, absorbing and transferring the solar energy to any working fluid like air or water are called the solar energy collector. The solar heat being collected can be used for heating water, or for heating the swimming pools and for backing up the heating systems. The solar collector has an absorber which is composed of various metal strips. The fluid present for the heat transfer flows from a pipe which carries heat and is also connected to the absorber strip. Whereas in the case of a flate-plate absorbers, two sheets are sandwiched so as to allow the medium to flow in between the sheets (Chang, K.W., 2008). Some of the solar collector include:
Batch collectors, Glazed flat-plate collectors, solar cooker, unglazed flat-plate collectors etc.
Chapter 4: The Solar Thermal Power System
The solar thermal power plants are used for heating a fluid which is circulated through the pipes. The steam so produced is then converted into the mechanical energy in a turbine which is useful in generating the electricity. The Solar thermal power generation also work similar to the power generation being run by the fossil fuels but in these have combustion of the fossil fuels instead of the steam. A concentrator system is used by the solar thermal technologies for achieving the high temperature required for production of the stream (Singh, N., Kaushik, S. C., & Misra, R. D., 2000).
Solar power is one of the most important type of renewable energy that is always available and is also free of cost. The usage of the solar energy can be of a high value to the whole human kind. The government of all the nations need to focus on its implementation to make people aware about its importance in helping humans and the environment as well.
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Fanney, A. H., & Dougherty, B. P. (1994). U.S. Patent No. 5,293,447. Washington, DC: U.S. Patent and Trademark Office
Sarver, T., Al-Qaraghuli, A., & Kazmerski, L. L. (2013). A comprehensive review of the impact of dust on the use of solar energy: History, investigations, results, literature, and mitigation approaches. Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, 22, 698-733.
Chang, K.W., 2008. Solar-power collector. U.S. Patent Application 12/155,405.
Singh, N., Kaushik, S. C., & Misra, R. D. (2000). Exergetic analysis of a solar thermal power system. Renewable energy, 19(1), 135-143.
Kalogirou. S. Solar Energy Engineering – Processes and System (2nd Edition).
Newton, D. Solar Energy: A Reference Handbook