In today’s world, Uses of solar energy are on the rise but as of now, fossil fuels are used as a major resource for producing energy. Advanced and modern society is highly dependent on energy that is generated by burning fossil fuels like coal and petroleum.
From cooking food to driving a vehicle humans need an immense amount of energy. We are living in a world where all the devices and appliances we use, need a constant amount of power to keep functioning. This demand cannot be fulfilled through fossil fuels only, because they are limited. The burning of coal and petroleum products for generating energy is harmful to the earth as it leads to the emission of carbon.
Fossil fuels are the natural resources of the earth and are available in a limited amount. The day by day increasing demand for these non-renewable resources is causing harm to the earth and its environment. Global warming, greenhouse effect, and pollution are the adverse effects of the burning of fossil fuels. This can only be reduced by using a clean source of energy.
We are fortunate that we have Sun which is the only and the biggest source of energy on earth. It has an abundant amount of energy that can be used instead of energy produced by limited sources of energy. Sun is the most reliable alternative source of energy. The use of solar energy will help in reducing the need for burning fossil fuel.
Before we go further and discuss the uses and benefits of solar energy, let us first understand what is solar energy first?
Table of Contents
- 1 What is Solar Energy?
- 2 Technologies for Generating Solar Energy –
- 3 Uses of Solar Energy
What is Solar Energy?
Since the beginning of the earth, the Sun has been a major source of energy on this planet. The energy generated by the Sun is known as solar energy. Solar energy is the form of renewable energy which means, that unlike coal and petroleum we cannot run out of this energy source.
There are a number of technologies by virtue of which we can convert solar radiation into energy. This energy can then be utilized as renewable energy for various purposes. Through various technologies, solar energy can be used directly to provide heat, light and indirectly in the form of electricity.
Technologies for Generating Solar Energy –
Solar power plants
- Through this technology, solar energy is directly or indirectly converted into electrical energy (electricity) which can then be used for multiple purposes.
- Photovoltaics (PV) is used to directly convert solar radiation into electricity using the photoelectric effect and the Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) system converts solar energy indirectly into electricity. The largest photovoltaic power plants are mainly situated in the USA.
- Solar energy can be used for various purposes apart from producing electricity. The solar heating system can be of two types i.e. liquid-based system and air-based system.
- Solar cookers are covered with a glass plate that uses solar energy for cooking. Solar cooker helps to reduce the use of fuels like charcoal, natural gas, wood, etc. and ultimately prevents pollution.
- The solar cell is another technology which is used to convert solar energy into electricity. The energy is stored in these solar cells which have multiple applications.
Uses of Solar Energy
There are various uses of solar energy. These uses are such that can be used to save this planet from an otherwise inevitable disaster.
Here are some of the uses are enlisted:
Use of Solar Panels
- This is an indirect use of solar energy and is a clean way of generating energy. The solar panels installed on the rooftops (or at any place) are beneficial as they have multiple applications. They reduce the consumption of electricity and cut down your bills.
- The maximum electricity is generated at the Thermal power and hydropower plants across the world. Thermal power plants emit a huge amount of carbon which is the biggest reason behind the degradation of the earth’s environment. On the other hand, hydropower plants do not pollute air and water but they have an adverse impact on land, climate and natural habitat of living organisms due to the construction of dams and other facilities.
- The battery life of gadgets and appliances is the biggest nuisance in the current world. But with solar energy, all these issues will no longer be able to bother you. Solar water heater, solar light bulb, solar furnaces, solar water heater, etc. are some solar energy appliances that you can apply at home and can save yourself hundreds of dollars. This will also help to reduce your carbon footprint.
Use of solar cooker
- The use of a solar cooker is very helpful in saving the earth. A solar cooker helps to reduce the consumption of fuels that emit carbon and thus pollute the environment.
- The coal, wood and natural gas that is used for cooking are limited and a non-renewable source of energy that causes various environmental issues. Thus by using clean solar energy, you can contribute towards the betterment of this planet.
Use of solar cars and vehicles
- Vehicles run on renewable sources of energy and are therefore the biggest reason for air pollution and earth aging. The use of solar energy in cars and other vehicles can solve this problem. However, it is not that easy as it needs huge expenditure and planning.
- But every step in this direction will be worth it as petrol and natural gas are limited and will be vanished in the future. It is the need of the hour to look for clean and green fuel for vehicles and no other option is better than solar energy.
Use of clothesline in place of dryer
- Use a clothesline at your backyard, front yard or any other open space of your house instead of putting your clothes into a dryer. This saves a lot of energy. By doing this you can significantly cut down your monthly electricity bill along with taking a step towards safe earth.
“Solar energy is being used for over 2700 years. During 700 BC, glass lenses were used to light up the fire by magnifying the sun’s rays”. – conserve energy future
Use of Solar lights
- Solar lights should be used in place of the regular street lights. Imagine the amount of electricity consumed by the forever lighted lamps on your streets. The amount of power that can be saved if we switch off these regular lights or find some better alternative to them.
- Solar-powered street lights, for instance, are so convenient that they simply work as the natural process works. During day times it can be charged and during the night the charge saved during the day can be utilized.
- With the recently emerging trend of replacing the regular sources of energy with solar energy, it is high time that we use this method in every possible way. Replacing Street lights or other lights that we use at our home or offices for daily purposes with solar lights we can save such a great amount of energy and electricity.
Use of Solar transportation
- The energy that is currently consumed by the form of transportation that we are using today is so immense that it is accelerating at a speed by which our earth is moving towards a Doomsday. One way that seems possible to stop this catastrophe is to switch the regular transportation with Solar Transportation.
- Solar transportation uses Solar Energy as a source of power. Our technology has advanced so well that now we can switch completely to solar transportation instead of the conventional one.
Use of Solar Heating in Houses as well as Offices
- Solar Heating of Houses, as well as Offices, can be done by solar space heating systems. In European or North American countries or other such countries that remain snowbound for an entire year, heating houses are a must. Heating Houses can be prepared in various ways, some of them are environment-friendly and some are not.
- Solar Heating is environment-friendly for instance, by powering radiant floors with a Forced Hot Air system. Solar Heating if used in Homes and Houses requires the different types of ventilation and material to be used for Housing. It saves a lot of energy and is more environmentally friendly than conventional heating systems.
Uses of Solar Batteries for Portable Devices
- In our ever-connected world charge and battery is most important. If for all those portable devices we switch the regular battery with a solar battery, so much energy from nonrenewable sources can be saved. In fact, solar batteries if made properly will definitely make for a more environment-friendly and super convenient alternative.
- It will work entirely on the power of charge obtained from the Sun, which is totally renewable and everlasting.
Hence, these are some of the benefits of solar energy by which we can save the earth.
The government should focus more on developing solar power plants as the consumption of energy is increasing day by day. Solar energy is something that can save this planet and fulfill the energy demand without damaging the natural environment. To maintain the health of the earth, for energy security and environmental sustainability it is necessary for all countries to concentrate their efforts on the maximum utilization of Sun’s energy.
Go Solar, Save Energy, Save Earth.