Sustainable energy: An introduction

When we look up the word “sustainable” in the dictionary, we would see that it means “able to be used without being completely used up or destroyed.” So, when someone mentions the words “sustainable energy”, we would immediately think that it is an energy that can never be completely used up. Pretty awesome, yes?

Sustainable energy comes in many forms. This would include solar energy, tidal energy, wind energy, hydroelectric energy, biomass energy and geothermal energy. All of these energy sources can be used to sustain earth’s needs for a very long time without us worrying about running out of supply. That’s what makes these sources of energy awesome—they are virtually limitless. Imagine what humanity can do with that much power?
Even if it seems that we have only recently heard of these sources being used for power. These energy sources have actually been used since ancient times.

Since the beginning of civilization, human kind has been looking for ways to improve they way of living. From food production to transportation, man realized that they need energy to survive. So they turned to valuable resources for energy. If we think about it, ancient civilization didn’t have any hi-tech equipment, yet they were able to use resources to help sustain their lives. They used solar energy to dry and preserve food, and also for agricultural processes. These people also used wind energy to help with the movement of their ships.

They burned dried wood, grass and cornhusks to cook their food and also to keep warm. Even if they didn’t think much about it, they knew that these energy sources were important.

As time pass by, this knowledge has been passed on, with each generation adding improvement to the efficiency of harnessing the power of these resources. Various inventions were created and additional discoveries were made. Some of the greatest thinkers of the generation worked together to give modern civilization what they needed; unlimited energy.

With this unlimited energy, society’s indifferent parts of the world have managed to improve their ways of life, and not to mention, improve their budget status as wee. Even fitness equipment can be charged with solar energy nowadays. I have a small fitness in my garage and I am able to power a very good cheap treadmill that I bought for $300. The advances in technology also have made possible for the average home owner to obtain the equipment needed to be able to be self-sufficient in terms of electricity production for their daily needs.

Different countries have been striving to be able to improve the energy-harnessing capabilities of their technology. Once improved, societies would be less dependent of non-sustainable energy sources and rely solely on sustainable energy

Green Energy in 2015

With the rise in the population in the world today, one of the most pressing issues being faced by societies is regarding energy sources. With more and more people adding to world’s population every second, there’s a tendency that environmental resources would somehow diminish in the near future. Before, when the world wasn’t as much populated as today, people had no problem looking for sources of energy. There’s always coal mining and also oil for fuel. But, as times passed by, these resources seem to be on a verge of depletion. They are non-renewable sources of energy, after all.

So, what is man supposed to do? Look for alternative sources of energy, of course. News nowadays tend to show various inventions that employ various natural sources, like using water to power machines or using wind to generate electricity. However, what seems amazing to me is that a lot of people today are still trying to rack their brains on how is it possible to use these resources to generate energy. Ladies and gentlemen, this is what we call Green energy or Renewable energy. These resources are called “green” or “renewable” for a reason. They are aptly called green energy simply because they come naturally from the environment. Simple, yes? These include sunlight/ sun, water, tides, waves, biomass / biofuel, wind and geothermal energy.

They are also called renewable energy, because, unlike oil or coal, these energy sources are seemingly endless. There is basically no need to refill them every few hours and are pretty much still available to your children and your children’s children in the future. Let’s face it, it’s not like you’re going to run out of wind, right?
Using renewable energy isn’t really new to our civilization. Truth be told, they have been used since 790,000 years ago. Our ancestors first depended on biomass (resource from organisms) as an energy source, such as burning wood for heat. Soon after, our ancestors started using other green resources such as the wind to help move their ships across rivers and seas (engines haven’t been invented yet).

However, as usage of coal and oil for fuel became more widespread, most of the technologies developed are dedicated to the improvement of equipment used to obtain these resources. The sad part about this is that the gathering of these resources costs the environment dearly. Clearing of trees to make way for mining sites and pollution are some of the results of harnessing these resources. It also must be noted that these resources are not renewable.

Today, more and more environmentalists encourage people to turn to environmental-friendly ways to obtain energy and science took the challenge seriously by developing modern equipment to harness renewable sources of energy, such as wind turbines for converting wind energy into electricity and solar panels to harness energy from the sun. All these equipment are used to supplement the depleting energy sources of countries and also aid the environment in return.

Going On A Budget? How About Below $500?

Affordable Solar Panels

How do you want to set up solar power systems at your house for no more than $4,000? It is now possible thanks to a brand new development. Here is more economical in several instances also, and the tipping point year where solar in several areas is now economical versus conventional sources of electricity. The price of panels has decreased with a large sum from just a couple of years back and also the efficiency has grown. Bangladesh the Financial Times reports has some 80,000 dwelling solar units. Ikea is selling self-install systems in Europe at a few of its own shops.

Your entire house will not run, although it’ll run several key electronic equipment and appliances, as stated by the Minneapolis Star Tribune. And additionally, it is possible to enhance your array by buying added kits to power increasingly more of your house as time passes. Notably in states like Oklahoma, Arizona, California, Utah, Texas and Florida, to name some. And solar improves the value of your property at resale with a vast sum, so that even in case you don’t stay in your house it is practical. When you squeeze too difficult, however, the difficulty with that’s, folks look for some other methods to depart the power system. I now have at home that is solar, and so I’m looking for other off-the-grid choices as this is written by me. The utilities which are attempting to cheapshot us will get the market reacts, plus they will lose individuals completely. People will be forced by creating economic disincentives off the power system.

Please bear in mind that this isn’t a CPS. This thermal energy may subsequently be utilized to make electricity by means of heat engine or a steam turbine . Focusing solar power provides a utility-scale, business, dispatchable renewable energy option that may help satisfy the need for electricity of our nation’s. CSP plants generate electricity by using mirrors to focus sunlight. Finally, this high temperature fluid can be used to spin a turbine or electricity engine. CSP systems that are smaller could be found right where power is required. Single dish/engine systems can create 3 to 25 kilowatts of electricity and so are nicely suited for programs that are distributed. There are many assortments of CSP systems.

Word of Caution: DIY Solars Are A Hard Task

DIY Solar

There have now been many claims made from specific web sites that say it’s feasible to create your very own solar power systems and run your whole house from solar panel systems for an outlay of $200 or less, sell excess electricity back to the utility power system as well as produce an income from solar. Most of the claims made with these sites are either deceptive or untrue. The following is usually received by you when you subscribe to these services. Informative data on rebates and tax credits for installing solar PV in America. (But rebates and these credits will not be appropriate for gear that is home constructed. The web sites omit to let you know that). A listing of people and businesses that will sell you individual solar cells.

A lot of the web sites maintain, or at least infer, you may run your house on a solar panel assembled for around $200. In fact, your $200 will buy you enough solar cells to create a solar panel generating between 60-120 watts, which can be definitely insufficient to allow your house to run . Leaving aside the obvious point that it is possible to buy a professionally built 60-100 watt solar panel with five-year guarantee and hoped-for 25-year lifespan for under $200 in the event you shop around, there are many reasons why it isn’t wise to construct your personal solar panels applying this advice:

A solar panel is a precision piece of gear, built to live outside for enormous temperature variation including extreme heat and decades. Manufactured solar panels use parts that are highly specialised, to high standards also in a clean room environment. For instance, the glass is a unique tempered merchandise built to resist temperatures that are enormous and optimise light penetration. The solar cells you can purchase from sellers are factory seconds. Many chipped and damaged or are blemished. Many of them are brittle, nearly as thin extremely delicate and quite easy to break.

You’re prone to make a cold solder joint unless an expert at soldering techniques are you. Cold solder joints are not unlikely to develop a high temperature arc, which could take up a fire. Don’t use plexiglass. Miniature imperfections can cause light refractions and extreme heat develop on components inside the panel. Plexiglass also can distort raising these light refractions with time.

Most directions advocate backing from wood and assembling the framework. That is not safe due to the extreme heat develop in a solar panel. On a bright and hot day, the panel’s surface temperature can surpass 90degC (175degF). If you have any added localised heat develop inside the panel, these area temperatures may not be as low as 800degC (1472degF). There are lots of recorded instances where home made solar panels caused damage to people’s houses and have caught fire. These fires are usually due to inferior quality soldering, or using materials that were improper.

A lot of the web sites marketing solar panels that are home made maintain you may power your house together. In America, joining panels that are home made for your family electrics would in breach and you’d thus not be permitted a license to put in them. Several web sites infer that you may also sell your power back to the utility firms. It’s in fact illegal to install non-approved electricity generation equipment to the utility power system in several states, including Great Britain as well as America. Rebates and the tax credits that are offered for installing solar PV in your property are unavailable for solar panels that are house constructed. A lot of people who make their very own solar panels have discovered they fail after just a couple of days or weeks as a result of high temperature arcing and panel failure, or fail after several months as a result of moisture penetration.


Who say that you need to pay a lot for solar panels!!!

Solar Energy: Pros and Cons

If you’re a typical outdoorsy-type of person, you must have tried gazing out into the sunset or tried waking up really early to catch the first rays of sunlight in the morning. Chances are you might have tried getting a tan during summertime too. If so, you have already reveled in the gloriousness that is the solar energy.

A great video that fits this article thanks to my friend Jane who is an owner of what I claim to be the best Seattle solar panel installer company. Now, in the present times, solar power is considered as a renewable source of energy, meaning it isn’t likely to diminish in just a few years. Since it is a renewable source of energy, you would probably say that it is all positives. But, just like any other idea, there would be pros and cons to using this type of energy.

Let’s talk about the Pros first.

There are actually plenty of positive sides in using solar energy. I believe one has already been mentioned. One main positive side is that it is renewable. Therefore, we don’t have to worry about running out of solar energy within the next million years.

Another pro in using this renewable energy is that you can actually save money. With the increasing piles of bills in our homes, we would end up doing every possible method to save money. If we use solar energy, solar panels would just be fitted on our roofs and enables us to save thousands of dollars from electric bills alone. How’s that for saving money?

Of course, when we use non-renewable sources of energy like coal and fuel, not only do we run the risk of running out of these resources but they end up destroying the environment as well. Pollution is created and ultimately affects the health of people. However, with solar energy, people do not need to worry about detrimental effects to the environment. Unlike other sources of energy that add toxic wastes to the environment, solar energy does not produce any end-waste products, thus do not contribute to the ongoing global warming problem.

Last but not least it is the price. Recently I was looking around shopping for a good soundbar under $1000 and then it hit me… almost everything costs more than a DIY solar panels system.

However, we cannot disregard the downside of using solar energy.

One possible downside is that the equipment needed to construct solar panels to harness energy is continuing to improve, and therefore still a bit expensive. Although it is designed to help you save money in the long run, the materials needed may be a bit expensive. However, there are plenty of installation companies out there nowadays that offer to install solar panels on your rooftop for absolutely free with no interest, too.

Seeing as we would have to harness energy from the sun, it would be that one possible downside would be that we would be able to obtain energy from the sun 24 hours a day. During nighttime, it would mean that there would also be no electricity generated from the panels. Technology to store solar energy for usage during nighttime is still under improvement, so, until then, this would be one con that is somewhat hard to ignore.

In summary, using the sun as a renewable source of energy has many benefits which include being able to save money and save the environment as well. The cons would include that it is a bit costly and that the sun doesn’t shine 24 hours a day.