An Overview: How Does Solar Power Work?

ABEST1 An Overview: How Does Solar Power Work?

Article by Y.T. Lee

Now that fossil fuels are becoming used up more and more with each passing day, the time for trying out another source of energy has come. One good source is solar power. At present, there are a number of people who utilize solar power not only in the workplace, but also in the home. How does solar power work, is a question that will immediately cross the minds of those who have not tried setting up solar panels to gain solar energy.

Most people who hear the phrase: ‘solar energy’ will usually be reminded of the sun. Solar energy may be considered as the most practical energy source, especially because of the fact that it is renewable. Aside from that, it can be used in a variety of ways as it has different forms e.g. for heating purposes, for powering electrical appliances, etc. There was even a time during the 1980s wherein solar power was used to provide electricity to millions of homes in California.

Solar energy may be produced through the use of the so called photovoltaic tiles. Although there are other ways to produce this kind of energy, photovoltaic tiles may be considered as the most widely used. Photovoltaic tiles work by extracting energy from the sun which will be transformed into a purified form of electricity that can be used in homes. The said tiles are made up of photovoltaic cells, or solar cells that are comprised of negatively charged silicon and positively charged silicon. Once the protons of the sun meet with the silicon, an electric current is produced.

The electric current that results may be called direct current and must first go through an inverter. Once the said current passes through the inverter, it will be transformed into an alternating current which is what is needed to power electrical appliances in our homes. The resulting current may be less than 100% in terms of efficiency, but is still usable and will be able to bring down electricity bills significantly.

Another good thing about a solar cell or photovoltaic cell is that it requires very little maintenance and may even last for more than thirty years. With all the crises happening currently, solar energy is definitely refreshing and may be more efficient than other forms of energy.

Aside from providing power to a house, solar power may also be used as a heater. It can provide heat to a pool, give central heating, be used in boiling water, etc. A solar power system is usually so efficient that it can give between 75% to 100% power to the user’s property, with a significant part of that power brought back to the system or ‘recycled’. With this ‘power recycling’, the need to pay for electricity is lessened, thus creating more savings.

Many people who learn about the answers to the question: how does solar power work, may really want to try using a solar energy system in their homes. After all, who would not want to save money while at the same time have the electricity they need?

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