Related topics: solar cells · energy · solar panels · electricity · megawatts

Chemists create the brightest-ever fluorescent materials

By formulating positively charged fluorescent dyes into a new class of materials called small-molecule ionic isolation lattices (SMILES), a compound's brilliant glow can be seamlessly transferred to a solid, crystalline state, ...

Breakthrough method for predicting solar storms

Extensive power outages and satellite blackouts that affect air travel and the internet are some of the potential consequences of massive solar storms. These storms are believed to be caused by the release of enormous amounts ...

New solar material could clean drinking water

Providing clean water to soldiers in the field and citizens around the world is essential, and yet one of the world's greatest challenges. Now a new super-wicking and super-light-absorbing aluminum material developed with ...

Purifying water with the help of wood, bacteria and the sun

According to the United Nations, about one-fifth of the world's population lives in areas where water is scarce. Therefore, technologies to produce clean water from undrinkable sources, such as seawater, river or lake water, ...

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Solar energy

Solar energy is the radiant light and heat from the Sun that has been harnessed by humans since ancient times using a range of ever-evolving technologies. Solar radiation along with secondary solar resources such as wind and wave power, hydroelectricity and biomass account for most of the available renewable energy on Earth. Only a minuscule fraction of the available solar energy is used.

Solar power provides electrical generation by means of heat engines or photovoltaics. Once converted, its uses are limited only by human ingenuity. A partial list of solar applications includes space heating and cooling through solar architecture, potable water via distillation and disinfection, daylighting, hot water, thermal energy for cooking, and high temperature process heat for industrial purposes.

Solar technologies are broadly characterized as either passive solar or active solar depending on the way they capture, convert and distribute sunlight. Active solar techniques include the use of photovoltaic panels and solar thermal collectors (with electrical or mechanical equipment) to convert sunlight into useful outputs. Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA