Uses of Solar Energy, Important, Advantages and Disadvantages, Types, Solar Energy Project (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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What is Solar Energy?

  • Solar energy is the natural source of energy from solar power absorbed from the sun through solar panels.
  • It is a renewable form of energy on the planet Earth and a readily available form of energy. Since ancient days people have been using solar energy. Solar cells absorb energy from the sun and convert it to electricity.
  • Solar energy is transformation of energy that is present in the sun and is one of the renewable energies. Once the sunlight passes through the earth՚s atmosphere, most of it is in the form of visible light and infrared radiation. Plants use it to convert into sugar and starches and this process of conversion is known as photosynthesis. Solar cell panels are used to convert this energy into electricity.
  • Below are uses of solar energy in different ways

Important Uses of Solar Energy

  • Solar energy is a renewable, inexhaustible and affordable form of energy. There exist two types of solar devices: active and passive. Using solar energy, environmental pollution can be reduced to some extent.
  • One of the cleanest and purest forms of energy. Some of the applications are heating, indoor and outdoor lights, transportation etc. Below are some of the other uses:
    • Uses of solar energy in India
    • Solar energy for battery charging
    • Solar energy for cooking
    • Solar energy for houses
    • Solar water heater

Uses of Solar Energy in India

  • India is one of the populated countries in the world and since solar energy is environment-friendly it is best suited. It does not release carbon dioxide.
  • It is an excellent replacement for non-renewable energies as it is an inexhaustible energy source. In India, power generation is costly so solar energy is the best way.

Solar Energy for Cooking

Using solar energy to cook is simple and non-expensive method.

Solar Energy for Industries

  • Industries require electricity at higher levels due to the use of heavy machinery and equipment. The power supply can be given through solar energy.
  • It is also used to protect pipes from corrosion reaction. Using solar energy will keep the electricity bills in control.

Solar Energy for Battery Charging

  • Batteries used to play video games etc. can be charged during the daylight as a backup in case power cut issues occur.
  • Also, to save electricity you can charge the reserve battery bank in the sunlight throughout the day and use it in the nighttime.

Solar Water Heater

There are two types of solar water heaters to replace traditional water heaters viz, active solar hot water systems and Passive hot water systems.

Active water heater system: There are two types of active solar water heating systems-

  • Direct Circulation system – They have a pump to circulate household water into the house with the help of solar collectors.
  • Indirect Circulation – It uses non-freezing liquid to transfer water that flows into the home. Usually used in areas where there are freezing temperatures.
  • Passive Water Heater System – They are cheap but less efficient than active water heater systems. There are two types of passive solar water heating systems-
  • Integral Collector-Storage passive water heater systems – Used in parts of the world where freezing temperatures occur very rare. The solar collector in such a system is integrated right inside the water storage tank. The water is heated when the sun shines directly on the water storage tank.
  • Thermosyphon passive water heater systems – The solar collector (heats the water) is positioned below the storage tank.

Solar Energy Advantages and Disadvantages

Advantages of Solar Energy Are

  • Clean: It is considered to the cleanest form of energy as there is no emission of carbon dioxide like in case of fossil fuels which is one of the causes of global warming.
  • Renewable: There is an ample amount of energy available on earth as long as the sun exists.
  • Reliable: The energy can be stored in the batteries and so there is no question of unreliability.
  • Reduction in utility costs.
  • Free energy because it can be trapped easily.

Disadvantages of Solar Energy

  • The production is low during winters and on cloudy days.
  • Installation and the initial cost of the materials are expensive.
  • Space consumption is more.

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