Solar energy is the wave of the future. There are many exciting developments, but what can we say about the ins and out of this amazing method of powering our lives? Whether we’re trying to live off the grid, save on energy bills, or have a backup reservoir of energy in an emergency, solar is essential to our way of life. So, how many different kinds of solar power are there? How do they differ? Read on to learn more about the three types of solar energy below.
Solar Photovoltaic Plants
This is the most common kind of solar technology. It uses semiconductor materials that absorb the light that strikes the panel. It works as follows: the heat from the sun’s radiation loosens electrons from atoms. The electrons then flow through the semiconductor, and it begins to produce energy. It can take most of the spectrums of light and turn them into pure energy.
Solar Water Heating Systems
This form of solar technology uses the sun’s energy to heat water. It can bring it to a boil. The energy is completely free, and water heats up to 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Restaurants, guest houses, hotels, and hospitals often use this form of solar heating, helping them save on their energy bill. This is a key difference between residential and commercial solar. People typically use commercial solar for projects on a larger scale than residential.
Sun’s rays fall on the collector panel, which absorbs solar radiation and transfers heat to energy to water. It’s then collected in an insulated tank. This helps prevent heat loss so the water isn’t cold by the time you get to it. Water circulates from the tank through the collector and back to the tank to prevent heat loss.
Concentrated Solar Power
You would install concentrated power on a large scale so that it can give the grid electricity. It uses lenses and mirrors to concentrate a wide enough area that can, at most, power industry or small township. The flat mirrors convert sunlight into high-temperature heat, that’s then channeled through a generator. This is a key type of solar energy power.