Well, not sure if is solar energy revewable? Yes, it is. End of mistery. But this is not the interesting part. The interesting part is understanding why.
After all, this energy source is essential energy for human life and is an alternative in the generation of electricity to supply homes in cities, and you deserve some answers.
Why is solar energy renewable?
It happens because this energy comes from sunlight, that is a natural source and, as long as there is sunlight, it can be used without wearing out or harming the environment.
To understand why solar energy is renewable, we need to understand what exactly it means. This type of energy, which is also known as clean energy, is a type of electricity source that does not harm planet Earth.
Currently, most of the world’s electricity generation comes from burning fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas or even coal, which are made from organic compounds.
These sources pollute the environment by releasing carbon dioxide into the atmosphere as they burn.
Solar energy, in turn, does not release any material into the atmosphere. It comes from the sunlight itself, which is converted into electricity by a photovoltaic system. So it’s clean energy.
More specifically, renewable energy is energy derived from complementary natural sources such as hydropower (water), tidal energy (tidal), geothermal (heat from the interior of the earth), wind (wind), biomass (organic materials) and, of course, solar.
But it is important to note that solar energy can be generated even on cloudy or rainy days. In fact, this trapping is not necessarily from direct sunlight on the panels, but from the absorption of solar radiation, which occurs even when the weather is cloudy. Of course, the efficiency will not be the same, after all, the more sun, the more radiation, but your system will still work.
The potential for this clean, renewable energy source is enormous. It is considered the third largest capacity after hydro and wind power. According to the Brazilian Photovoltaic Solar Energy Association (ABSOLAR), photovoltaic solar energy generation in Brazil has exceeded 8 gigawatts (GW).
Is solar energy inexhaustible?
Solar energy is unmatched by any other traditional energy system because it is a 100% natural, ecological, free, inexhaustible and environmentally friendly source of energy.
For every 1 square meter of solar collectors installed, 56 square meters of fertile land can be saved for the construction of a new hydroelectric plant.
Also, for every 1 square meter of installed solar collectors, 55 kg of LPG or 66 liters of diesel oil per year or 215 kg of firewood per year can be saved.
In addition, solar energy panels prevent the construction of new hydroelectric plants, which have as a side effect the loss of tropical flora and fauna, the inundation of land that was or could be used for agriculture and livestock, housing or environmental reserve, loss of heritage historical/cultural and family relocation.
Solar cells prepared in solar panels are considered a solution for rural electrification and have advantages over other alternatives, as the panels do not pollute, do not produce noise, do not consume fuel and require little maintenance, unlike wind energy.
Another advantage: In addition to working on cloudy days, as they capture the light filtered by the clouds.
Power can be stored in batteries and used hours later at night, and even backup power can be fed into the mains.
Solar cell prices continue to fall and mass production is starting. It is very likely that in the next two decades, much of the electricity consumed in the world will come from the conversion of photovoltaic cells.
Solar power can seamlessly complement other traditional energy sources, avoiding the need for large and expensive systems.
How does solar energy work?
To convert solar radiation into electricity more efficiently, the ideal situation is for sunlight to fall directly on the photovoltaic cells. Therefore, the greater the direct incidence on the solar panel, the greater the energy produced.
Therefore, the best locations for solar panels are those without shaded areas, allowing them to receive the sun’s rays throughout the day. This provides an uninterrupted release of current, which will be picked up by the conductive filaments of the photovoltaic panel.
After this process, the generated energy is forwarded to the solar inverter. This device converts direct current (DC) type energy produced in photovoltaic modules into alternating current (AC). This is because DC electricity does not change its flow direction as it travels through a circuit and needs to be converted to AC electricity to make it suitable for consumption.
The inverters ensure the safety of photovoltaic systems and generate information on energy production, helping to monitor the generator’s productivity.
After the conversion, the energy goes to your “light panel” and is distributed to your property. You can now use solar energy to power any device that uses electricity and is plugged into an outlet, such as TVs, computers, stereos, and lights.
Is solar energy sustainable?
The whole world can protect the environment through solar energy, as the preservation of rivers, deforestation and dam accidents are not on their list. Therefore, the use of clean and renewable resources is of utmost importance for the sustainable maintenance of our planet.
The environmental impact of solar energy is totally beneficial to nature as it provides energy from natural resources for conversion into electricity. In this way, the consumer can have a great source of energy in their property without harming the environment in any way.
Solar energy facts
It is super sustainable, renewable and inexhaustible
One of the great advantages of solar energy is that it can be used by everyone, since the abundance of sunlight makes this energy inexhaustible and universal. Brazil, as a tropical country, still stands out as one of the most promising territories for the dissemination of such an alternative.
Can generate drinking water
Solar energy can be used to transform saline water into potable water without the use of electricity or any chemicals. Can it be more sustainable than that?
Gained relevance during the oil crisis
In 1970, the world experienced an oil production crisis that revealed the delicate nature of fossil fuels as energy sources. This shock boosted the search for renewable sources, making room for wind energy and, especially, solar energy.
It is the ideal solution for netzero
Unlike other energies such as wind, hydroelectric and nuclear, which still emit some kind of pollutant, solar energy has zero carbon dioxide emissions. Thus, it helps to combat the greenhouse effect and its effects on the climate.
It is used by NASA
Space missions from several countries, especially the United States, with NASA, use solar panels to get power for their stations. You know those big flat plates you see in space mission movies? Well, they are photovoltaic panels!
Provides a lot of energy
If we took advantage of only a small percentage of the amount of watts of direct solar radiation that the Earth receives per square meter, we would no longer need other sources today.
There are huge solar power plants
Although we know better about homemade panels for this type of energy, there are already large solar plants around the world — located in the United States, Spain, Portugal and Germany, for example.