Education

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Power.

Did you know that the energy sun provides to the earth for one hour could meet the global energy needs for one year? Undoubtedly, the sun is a powerful energy source, and even though we are not able but to collect a fraction of this energy, yet harnessing this power by installing solar panels can make a significant difference to the planet.

While it has been widely criticised for being expensive or inefficient, solar energy has now proved to be extremely beneficial – not only for the environment but also for the private economy.

Solar power is becoming increasingly popular as both individuals and businesses realize the potential of energy independence through power provided by the sun. There are many advantages to its use, as well as reasons why it is better than other forms of energy. Solar energy also benefits the environment unlike most other energy sources. Although solar energy has many things going for it, it has disadvantages as well.

Solar power is a renewable resource, unlike coal, oil, and other fossil fuels. Sunlight is readily available and converting it to energy will not deplete the amount of sunlight that reaches earth. However, sometimes sunlight is not available to convert to energy when it is night time or cloudy outside. The inability to utilize the power of sunlight at all times is one of the disadvantages, although storage batteries can allow users to store and use energy even when the sun is not shining.

Another advantage is that it does not pollute the earth the way other energy sources do and it is silent. Fossil fuel sources are one of the main causes of pollution and global warming but solar power does not harm the environment at all. Mining and burning fossil fuels are also noisy and smelly, but deriving power from the sun causes none of these concerns.

Unlike other energy sources solar cells that produce solar power require very little maintenance. They do not have any moving parts and last a very long time, sometimes 30 years or more, without routine maintenance like other energy sources. This makes them economical because although solar cells can cost a lot upfront you will save big over time because they last for so long.

Converting your residential home to run partially or fully on solar power is not as hard as you think. Once you make the initial investment in a solar home heating system and install your solar panels, you will be able to harness the power of the sun to create electricity for your home. Solar roof tiles and solar water heating are two of the more popular options.

Disadvantages of Solar Energy.

1. Cost.

The initial cost of purchasing a solar system is fairly high. This includes paying for solar panels, inverter, batteries, wiring, and the installation. Nevertheless, solar technologies are constantly developing, so it is safe to assume that prices will go down in the future.

2. Weather-Dependent.

Although solar energy can still be collected during cloudy and rainy days, the efficiency of the solar system drops. Solar panels are dependent on sunlight to effectively gather solar energy. Therefore, a few cloudy, rainy days can have a noticeable effect on the energy system. You should also take into account that solar energy cannot be collected during the night.

On the other hand, if you also require your water heating solution to work at night or during wintertime, thermodynamic panels are an alternative to consider.

3. Solar Energy Storage Is Expensive.

Solar energy has to be used right away, or it can be stored in large batteries. These batteries, used in off-the-grid solar systems, can be charged during the day so that the energy is used at night. This is a good solution for using solar energy all day long but it is also quite expensive.

In most cases, it is smarter to just use solar energy during the day and take energy from the grid during the night (you can only do this if your system is connected to the grid). Luckily your energy demand is usually higher during the day so you can meet most of it with solar energy.

4. Uses a Lot of Space.

The more electricity you want to produce, the more solar panels you will need, as you want to collect as much sunlight as possible. Solar PV panels require a lot of space and some roofs are not big enough to fit the number of solar panels that you would like to have.

An alternative is to install some of the panels in your yard but they need to have access to sunlight. If you don’t have the space for all the panels that you wanted, you can opt for installing fewer to still satisfy some of your energy needs.

5. Associated with Pollution.

Although pollution related to solar energy systems is far less compared to other sources of energy, solar energy can be associated with pollution. Transportation and installation of solar systems have been associated with the emission of greenhouse gases.

There are also some toxic materials and hazardous products used during the manufacturing process of solar photovoltaic systems, which can indirectly affect the environment.

Reference :

Pros and Cons of Solar Energy/https://www.greenmatch.co.uk

“The Advantages and Disadvantages of Solar Power”, www.solarpoweristhefuture.com

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