Saturday, December 11, 2010

There Are Advantages Of Nuclear Energy As There Are Challenges


Are advantages of nuclear energy such that it could be part of the solution to global warming? Or is nuclear radiation an even greater problem?

The debate about whether to build nuclear energy reactors is again in full swing. It is necessary, as we become more aware about the magnitude of the climate change through the global warming phenomenon.

So identifying significant advantages of nuclear energy would be important.
Most scientists agree that we are seeing the effects of global warming already and that the imminent future looks dire. We must reduce the emissions that cause global warming. Therefore alternative energy must be employed.

Green Jobs Board

Green jobs are booming. In the USA, and elsewhere.

The environmental/economic pincer movement on Mother Earth and your wallet has prodded governments to spend billions to stimulate economies, including through green collar jobs in energy saving and renewable energy.

Water Fuel – Beats Soaring Gas Prices

Water4gas, HHO gas, Brown's gas, hydrogen gas generators,water fuel... You've probably heard these terms and you may have groaned. Scepticism is healthy thing. And there is indeed some hype out there.

But when you look at the hydrogen generation thing closer I agree that it has real application and is a valuable kind of "people-power technology." It seems you really can bypass the big car companies!
So,

* What is hydrogen gas
* How much can you save with water fuel?
* How does a hydrogen gas generator help your car increase it's mileage
* Safe?
* Other applications and benefits

Provision of Solar Energy

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The demand of Energy has increased tremendously during the last few decades in Pakistan, the same is expected to increase further in the coming years. Solar Energy is the possible clean and low cost renewable resources available in the country. The use of such naturally available in the country. The use of such naturally available energy resources can suitably be utilized in the remote areas of FATA where the supply and maintenance of electric supply from national grid is very expensive.
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The scattered and distantly located villages of FATA are either deprived of electricity or the power supply available is uncertain and with fluctuating/low voltage. Like other part of country, the exploitation of alternate energy resources also carries primary importance in FATA. Due to this reason the Governor NWFP also asked at several occasion to initiate studies for feasibility of alternate energy resources and provide solar energy units in FATA.
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This, being a specialized filed, needs detail feasibility study to determine the intensity of available solar energy in various parts of FATA, which is being carried out under another ADP scheme.
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The finding and recommendations of the studies, conducted by NUST Consulting, the project PC-Is (Phase-1) was prepared and got approval from FATADA BoD.

What Is Solar Energy?

If we can leave behind the public wave of denial in the reality of climate change and global warming, as caused by us, people, solar will be increasingly important in future lives as a clean, renewable energy.
Energy from the sun is present in fossil fuels, stored in fossilised plant remains that once grew and absorbed the sun’s energy through photosynthesis.

It is also directly experienced in the warmth of the sun and in its light.

The history of solar energy is a long one indeed. Defining solar energy may be simple but there is not just one answer to the question: what is solar energy? Generally solar energy is divided into two types: thermal energy and electric energy.

In summary, what is solar energy? It is

1. Energy from the sun

2. Thermal energy

3. Electric energy

4. Stand-alone

5. Grid connected

Sunday, October 10, 2010

SOLAR HOME ENERGY BASICS


Solar water heating, Solar PV electricity and Solar space heating are the three major solar technologies.

Solar Technologies

Current solar technologies involve 3 major areas (and a rather marginal one connected to space cooling):

1) Solar water heating
2) PV (photovoltaic) electric solar (electricity production for residential and commercial uses, and also for Recreational Vehicles (RV), Outdoor lighting, etc.).
3) Solar space heating
4) Solar home space cooling.

PV On-Grid And Stand-Alone Systems

Most PV solar systems are on-grid systems. See, for details: On-grid Solar and wind systems.

A stand alone PV energy system is not connected to a wider public or private grid. In this case it responds only to the needs of its owner. The stand alone systems is typicallu more expensive due to the required set of batteries for storing the energy.

Stand-alone PV solutions are popular in remote areas, where the connection to electric grids is expensive or impossible.

SOLAR ELECTRICITY: HOME PV - PHOTOVOLTAIC

Solar modules are the core of any Solar PV system, and are based on solar (photovoltaic) cells, which are made of special materials called semiconductors, usually silicon.
PV Solar Modules: The Sizing Problem

Solar modules collect the sun's energy and convert it into electricity. The number of modules (connected to form a rooftop array) will depend on your needs, climate and on the modules wattage.
PV Home And Non-Home Uses

Photovoltaic (PV) cells are used to produce electricity for residential use and also in calculators, watches, parking meters, and Vans, Boats and Recreational Vehicles...

Concentrating Collectors

Concentrating collectors are a rather marginal option in the solar market. They use parabolic and mirrored surfaces to concentrate and get sunlight energy. They are able to generate very high temperatures, and are mainly used on commercial applications. They demand direct sunlight and do not perform well in climates with low levels of direct sunlight.

They are scarcely used on residential applications. They are expensive and involve a large set of demanding requirements and configurations. They are used in large projects and electrical generation. The true alternative concerning solar panels for residential applications is between flat-plate and evacuated-tubes solar collectors.

Evacuated Tube Collectors

Evacuated tube collectors are a more recent technology than that of flat-plate collectors, and a more promising one. This type of solar collectors can be used in most climates and applications, but despite recent decreases on prices, they still are more expensive than the average flat-panels.

They are the best solution for demanding applications, that is, applications demanding higher water temperatures.

Solar Liquid Flat Glazed Collectors

These panels can be used in solar domestic water heating systems and for central heating (integrated in systems involving forced air systems, radiators or radiant heating). They are a flexible, tested and competitive option. They are by large, at present, the most common type of collectors in moderate and sunny climates.

Solar Air-Flat Glazed Panels

Solar air-flat glazed collectors are mainly used in solar space heating, and may be tied to forced air systems. They have some advantages over solar liquid-flat panels (they produce heat earlier and later in the day than liquid systems, they do not freeze and the negative consequences of eventual leaks are minimal) but they are also less efficient than liquid collectors, and aren’t as flexible in their applications.

Solar Flat Unglazed Panels

Solar-flat-unglazed collectors are used in swimming pools and simple house space heating (typically, solar air heaters with no heat storage, designed just to heat a room or a small part of the house). Unglazed panels are used in applications demanding low temperatures. They have a wide range of applications in sunny climates, where they can replace more expensive solar collectors.

Solar Collectors Choice

There are two main types of solar heating collectors:

- flat collectors (glazed and unglazed);
- evacuated-tubes collectors

Other types of solar collectors comprise: ICS (Integrated Solar) and concentrating panels. These last panels are rarely used in solar home applications.

Choosing the type of collector depends largely on climate conditions, price and on the type of application. Below we draw some some rough conclusions about the most suitable solar panels for several solar applications, taking into account the climate, price and type of application.

Solar Modules

Solar electricity involves a specific type of solar panels (mono crystalline, polycrystalline, thin film…) typically manufactured by large manufacturers as Sharp, Kyocera, Photowatt, BP Solar, or Mitsubishi...

SOLAR COLLECTORS AND SOLAR MODULES

The term solar solar collector refers to solar panels for hot water and air heating requirements. The type of solar collectors vary with the intended goal – water heating, radiant floor heating, pool heating, air space heating - and the climate where they are going to be applied.

Solar modules (also referred to as PV modules and solar generators) are used to convert sunlight directly into electricity.

Drainback Solar Systems

Like anti-freezing systems, drainback solar systems are also specially conceived for cold climates. They offer lower maintenance and longer life and reliability, but they pose higher demands in terms of design.

Antifreezing Solar Heating Systems (Active-Closed Pressurized Systems)

Cold climates demand more complex systems. Batch/ICS systems are clearly inadequate in freezing conditions, and thermosyphon solar systems involve some limitations.

One of the most popular solutions for freezing climates comprises a relatively complex system with an antifreezing fluid (glycol, usually), a differential controller, an expansion and a storage tank, and a heat exchanger and sensors and valves.

The Open-Loop Direct System

If you live in a moderate or hot climate, without freezing problems, you may choose a simple solar heating water system using a pump and water at the collector level. This system is called technically an Open-loop direct system.

Thermosyphon Solar Systems

Thermosyphon systems are also a simple solar heaters, very efficient and very popular in moderate and hot climates. They are cheap and demand no pumps or special controls, and can also be installed in colder climates.

Batch ICS Solar Systems


Batch solar systems (or ICS) are the simplest and, in a way, the oldest solar heating systems. They haven’t pumps, separated storage tanks or anti-freezing. They combine a solar collector and a storage tank into one single unit, and in their most simple version they are a mere water tank within a glazed box.

SOLAR HOT WATER HEATERS: THE DESIGNS

The designs and the type of components of the solar water heaters vary a lot. But we may consider five main designs, with different costs and complexities.
Solar Water Heating Designs
Main solar water heating designs:

- the batch ICS solar systems (an ultra-simple system for moderate climates);
- the thermosyphon solar systems (for moderate and other climates);
- the solar open-active heating systems (for moderate and hot climates);
- the drainback systems (cold climates);
- the anti-freezing pressurized systems (cold climates).

PORTABLE SOLAR ENERGY POWER STATIONS

Many families have already started using solar energy to power their homes. Portable solar energy power stations have many practical uses. Today there actually are portable solar energy power stations. Most portable solar power units use photovoltaic panels (PV panels). These portable solar energy stations generate energy from sunlight.

Advantages of using solar collectors

The major advantage of solar collectors - simplicity and relative cheapness of manufacture, ruggedness in operation.

The only important point - please be aware that on a hot sunny day with no parsing water can overheat above the boiling point, so the design must take appropriate precautions.

Other, no less important advantage, is that the collector is able to capture and convert into heat more than 90% has got to him sunlight. Even with light cloud, its efficiency exceeds the efficiency of other types of batteries.

Other, no less important advantage, is that the collector is able to capture and convert into heat more than 90% has got to him sunlight. Even with light cloud, its efficiency exceeds the efficiency of other types of batteries.

Residential Solar Panels


Solar panels - Power the Future
Solar panel - is characterized as a source of electric current through the photovoltaic cells. The advantage of solar panels due to the lack of moving parts, their high reliability and stability.
On the market solar cells can be divided into several classes:
- Low-power solar panels used to charge cell phones, PDA and other similar electronics. They are characterized by small area of the photographic plates and the relatively high cost.

Parabolic Solar Cooker

Parabolic solar cookers are a simple to use. There are several models for parabolic solar cookers. Parabolic solar cookers are very efficient. However conventional parabolic cookers need frequent adjustment to track the sun.

Solar Pool Covers

Anybody that owns an out of doors swimming pool will definitely wish to keep care of it. The good way to prevent something from getting into the water can be to use a pool cover.

Solar pool covers can help keep your pool clean, also help reduce the size of a solar pool heating system, which can save you money.

Advantages of using Solar pool covers
Solar pool covers are designed to absorb the sunlight. One of the main advantages of coatings is that they prevent heat loss. Evaporation is minimized. Thus, pool covers not only help maintain a comfortable water temperature, but also reduce the cost of heating water in the basin.

Solar panels


Modules are implemented in a constructive manner as monolithic laminate welded single-crystal elements.

- Frame solar cell is designed as a panel, enclosed in a frame made of aluminum profiles. Panel represents a photovoltaic generator, consisting of laminated glass panels c her elements. For the housing unit attached diode unit, under the cover of which placed electrical contacts, designed to connect the module.

- No frame modules are laminate on aluminum, glass, and - without the substrate. Solar cells are located between two layers of laminating film EVA. The front side is protected by an optically transparent film such as PET,

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Southampton airport gets solar-powered runway lights

Solar-powered lighting has been installed alongside Southampton Airport's runway.

Nick-named "Wig Wags" the flashing lights cost £25,000 in total and are used at junctions between the runway and taxiways.

Southampton is the first UK airport to install the lights which are also used by the US Air Force in Afghanistan.

An airport spokesperson said: "We've been able to minimise the environmental footprint and maintenance costs."

Solar energy

The five units, supplied by Systems Interface Ltd in Surrey, use solar panels to convert sunlight into electricity and ensure the lights operate 24 hours a day.

Their batteries can store enough energy to permanently operate the lights for up to 120 days without any solar charging.

The lights have also been installed in areas of the airport where there is no access to power supplies, saving the £170,000 cost of laying cables.

They were trialled during last winter as replacements for the conventional lighting systems.
Mark Gibb, director of airside operations admitted: "It's a drop in the ocean, but nonetheless it is part of our overall commitment to, wherever possible, identify possibilities to reduce carbon emissions.

August sees record rise in UK home solar panels fittings


A record number of homeowners had solar panels installed this month, according to energy regulator Ofgem.

The devices have been fitted to 2,257 homes so far during August, up from 1,700 in July and 1,400 in June.

More than 6,688 homes have had solar panels fitted since April, when the government's scheme to reward people who generate their own energy altered.

The feed-in tariff system now enables homeowners to receive 41.3p for every unit of energy they generate.

This is regardless of whether they use the energy or sell it back to the National Grid.

After the panels are installed, the tariff is paid for 25 years and increased in line with inflation.

This replaces the previous system, under which people could obtain grants to help cover the cost of installing the green technology.

According to the Energy Saving Trust, solar panels usually cost between £6,000 and £12,000 to buy and install, depending on their size.

The panels most commonly installed by homeowners, consisting of eight panels able to generate up to 2.5kW, cost between £10,000 and £12,000.

The Trust calculates such panels could generate about £700 a year from the feed-in tariff, as well as saving homeowners about £100 a year on energy bills.

In addition, people could make about £25 to £30 through selling unused energy back to the National Grid.

MIT boffins unveil self-healing solar cell

For years scientists have managed to develop solar cells that are highly efficient in laboratory conditions, but quickly deteriorate when asked to cope with direct sunlight – which constitutes something of a drawback for a solar panel.

Now a team of researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) reckon they may have found the solution to the problem of deteriorating solar cells following the demonstration of a new cell design that manages to repair itself.

The cell mimics the ability of plants to convert sunlight into energy at the same time as continuously breaking down light-capturing molecules and reassembling them from scratch in order to avoid the debilitating effects of sunlight.

Michael Strano, the Charles and Hilda Roddey Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering, who led the research team, said the cell was "basically imitating tricks that nature has discovered over millions of years", such as plants' " reversibility, the ability to break apart and reassemble".

The cell uses synthetic molecules known as phospholipids that form disks which then provide structural support to proteins that respond to light. The molecules then create "reaction centres" that release electrons when hit by light particles. When suspended in a solution these reaction centres spontaneously attach themselves to carbon nanotubes that hold the disks in place and also act as wires that can transmit the released electrons.

The research team then added a surfactant to the self-assembling mixture, which resulted in the seven components that make up the system breaking apart. Once the surfactant, which MIT said was similar to that used to break up the BP oil spill in the Gulf, was removed from the mixture using a membrane, the compounds spontaneously assembled once again into a perfectly formed, rejuvenated photocell.

The team then ran the cell through the same cycle of assembly and disassembly repeatedly over a 14-hour period and recorded no loss of efficiency.

Strano said that the initial experiment delivered very low levels of efficiency, because the concentration of the molecular structures in the solution was very low. However, the efficiency of each individual structure stood at around 40 per cent, double that of the most efficient solar cells currently available, while the team believes that, theoretically, the structures could reach close to 100 per cent efficiency. MIT said the team is now working on how to increase the concentration of the solution.

It is likely to take years to develop commercially available solar cells based on the technology, but the breakthrough suggests that one of the most significant technical challenges faced by emerging nanomaterial-based solar technologies could be overcome.

Is Solar right for you?

Solar is right for most every home, depending on your motivation. Are you interested in solar purely for economic benefit? Are you concerned for our environment or the social responsibility of your business? Are you concerned for our environment or the future health of your family? Are you bothered by the fossil fuel situation and wish to declare your energy independence? All of these are great reasons to go solar! Below are a few limiting factors to getting the most out of your solar electric system:

Why Solar Energy?

Solar energy systems reduce up to 100% your electricity costs, depending on system size. Utility prices are only going up every year. Solar energy provides you security from rising electricity rates.
A solar electric system adds value to any home or building and pays for itself for years to come. And, your solar system adds value without increasing your property taxes.
Solar is an environmentally responsible technology. Unlike fossil fuels, it does not emit pollutants which create harm to people and the environment.

TIPS for beginners builder.....!

Solar Panels for Beginners Tip #1

Don’t think you can build one solar panel and power your entire home. It won’t happen. However, you can run a small appliance, a light, or a small electric engine for several hours with one average sized panel.

Solar Panels for Beginners Tip #2

If you will have solar panels installed professionally, make sure it’s by a reputable company. There have been many people that have reported problems with less than reputable solar companies that never deliver as promised. Check with the Better Business Bureau in your area to find out which companies have unresolved complaints.

Solar Panels for Beginners Tip #3

Before you build a DIY solar panel, make sure you have enough roof space to correctly install the panel. Solar panels are not small and you certainly don’t want to end up with one too big for the area of the roof where it will be installed.

Building Your Own Solar Energy Panel

One reason why people often build their own panels is because it is much cheaper to do than to buy new solar panels. For beginners, there are a number of different ways it can be done and you’ll find most what you need at your local home improvement store. You can build a small one over the course of a weekend for about $200-$300. It will power a small shop or appliance. However, you can also loop these together to create more energy.

How Solar Energy Panels Work

Solar energy panels contain photovoltaic cells. This is where the energy from the sun is converted to electricity. While there’s quite a science behind it all, here are the basics. Silicon plates are used to allow electrons to flow freely through it. The silicon doesn’t have either a positive or a negative charge, so other elements, usually phosphorus, and boron are combined with the silicon, so the sun’s energy can be captured by the silicon. The photons from the sun bombard those silicon panels and this captured energy is converted into electricity that can be used to power household appliances, small shops, or even a entire home. Solar panels are looped together to create more energy. This is why you see many panels on the roof of a solar powered home.

Solar Panels for Beginners: What You Must Know

Solar power is quickly becoming one of the most popular forms of renewable sources of energy. It’s a fantastic way to conserve the earth’s natural resources, but also provides one of the cleanest, most effective forms of energy available today. For those that are not familiar with this type of energy, you need to get a little information on solar panels for beginners, so that you know the important aspects, terminology, and a little bit of the science behind it all.

School builds green future with solar panels

PUPILS took a green leap into the future when solar panels were installed at their school – thanks to a project launched by a parent.

Edward Feild School in Kidlington has installed 22 panels in time for the new school term.

The project, brainchild of parent Alan Asbury, will save the school £350 a year in fuel costs and teach youngsters about renewable energy.

Dad-of-two Mr Asbury raised the idea with staff and governors two years ago and then helped raise the £23,000 needed.

He said: “The new solar panels will hopefully raise awareness of the need for and obvious benefits of renewable energy.”

The panels will provide 3,500 kWh, roughly the annual electricity of an average household.

Pupils will be shown data explaining how much energy, cash and carbon has been saved.

School business manager Caroline Murray said: “Now the children can see the panels, they are very intrigued.

“They will be able to learn about them in their science lessons and the meter readings mean they can make graphs or monitor how the sun changes throughout the year.

“We’re very excited about the scope of this new equipment.”

The project was funded by the Government’s Department of Energy and Climate Change, and Barclaycard Pure.

Year Five pupil Fraser Day, nine, said: “It’s really cool to know that our idea has been put into action.

“We’re saving the school quite a lot of energy. We were going to have a wind turbine but we decided that it wouldn’t save as much money and they were too big.”

Erin Comess, also nine, said: “It’s really cool because we are saving energy and we can also sell the energy when we don’t need to use it.”

Headteacher Cathryne Wilkes said: “I’d like to thank Alan for his hard work and determination in seeing the project through to completion.”

Oxfordshire County Council is working with schools to cut CO2 emissions, currently about 36,000 tonnes a year.

Ian Hudspeth, cabinet member for growth and infrastructure, said: “This is a great example of the innovative ideas and hard work many of our schools are putting in to become more energy efficient and meet the environmental challenges of the future.”

IREC Announces Solar Licensing Database

In the database, licensing requirements for installing photovoltaic and solar thermal systems are documented for each state. These are organized alphabetically. Today, only 14 states have established specific solar license classifications, usually sub-classifications of electrical or plumbing licenses, and often specifically defined to limit the scope of work to direct solar installations and maintenance tasks. For additional information, resource links to state-specific websites and documents are included. IREC will update the database to keep pace with those changes as they become available.

“As licensing requirements emerge and change in individual states, IREC felt that it could contribute by providing this resource of existing requirements that can be used as a reference tool,” said IREC’s Director of Operations, Pat Fox.

“IREC is broadly recognized as a unique resource and conduit for change in the renewable energy arena. This database is just one of many IREC resources it offers free of charge to the public,” said Fox.

The Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) is a non-profit organization accelerating the use of renewable energy since 1982. IREC' s programs and policies lead to easier, more affordable connection to the utility grid; fair credit for renewable energy produced; best practices for states, municipalities, utilities and industry; and quality assessment for the growing green workforce through the credentialing of trainers and training programs.

First Solar Powered Car


Think back in time before automobiles came into the picture, one notable fact that you would observe would be the total lack of pollution, noise pollution, unhealthy emissions from the cars and no gasoline. It’s not that people didn’t travel, they did – but what they used was horsepower.
Now let’s think into the future, some basic similarities again, automobiles are in the picture but without the pollution, noise pollution etc. And again no gasoline! You would wonder how that is possible: Cars but no Gasoline? What would they run on? Well how about sunlight!
Solar power is something that is going to come up in a big way. There are many research projects about harnessing the sun’s energy and utilizing it for the betterment of mankind. So there might just be a future where transportation would not require any gasoline, it would be low cost and environmental friendly.
Work is already in progress to make this dream a reality. A team of fourth-year engineering students along with their professor, in Beruit, has been successful in building the first solar-powered vehicle in the Arab region. The American University of Beirut issued a statement in this regard. The vehicle has been aptly named Apollo’s Chariot. Apollo being the Greek God of the Sun as mentioned in mythology. This solar-powered vehicle is made entirely of steel and fiberglass and measures five-and-a-half meters in length and two meters in width. It’s a single seater and weighs about 700 kilograms, almost half the weight of an average sedan.
The Team of Elie Maalouf, Amin Kanafani, Ahamed Hammoud and Rawad al-Jurdi under the guidance of Mechanical Engineering Assistant Professor Daniel Asmar worked unceasingly for nine months to give shape to the “Chariot”.
This futuristic-looking vehicle with an aerodynamic design smoothly glides over the road with a total lack of noise and pollution. Eli Maalouf demonstrated the workings of the “Chariot” on Campus and impressed everyone with its effortless maneuvering. “Apollo’s Chariot “during the demo, moved forward, backward, along a curb and then up a small hill without any hitch.
Professor Daniel Amin in praise of this creation said that, “It looks like a rocket but moves like a swan,” “We actually built a car that runs on a new kind of energy. It’s almost like magic!”
Ellie said that the longest trip that he has ever made with the Chariot till now was, 50 meters and that he hopes that ” in the near future, I will be able to drive an improved version of this car, everyday ““ to university, to work, to go out with my friends.”
Professor Asmar purports that these solar-powered vehicles are important for research purposes for the time being and are yet still years from becoming available commercially. It would cost around a million dollars at present to build one that could be safely driven on streets.
“I’m ecstatic,” said Asmar. “This is a dream come true for me that would not have been “possible without our sponsors.”
To build Apollo’s Chariot a sum of $ 25,000, was raised through several local and foreign sponsors like Power Tech, a Lebanese co., Voluntariato Internazionale per lo Sviluppo (VIS), A volunteer Italian association for development, Italian Cooperation, Byblos Bank, Bank of Beirut and Arab Countries (BAAC), Bridgestone tires and the AUB Department of Mechanical Engineering to name a few.
The car converts solar energy into 1000 watts of power with the help of 36 small and 8 large photovoltaic cells. The car includes components like cells and batteries, for capturing and storing solar energy, and a DC (direct current) motor for converting energy from the batteries into a uniform source of energy. A maximum power point tracker device is also used to maximize the amount of power delivered from the cells.
A 3,000- kilometer race by solar electric cars is held in Australia with the purpose of promoting research on solar energy. It is known as The World Solar Challenge and was launched in 1987. The next race is to be held in 2009. The team aims to keep on improving Apollo’s Chariot so that they are able to represent Lebanon and AUB at the Next World Solar Challenge

How to build the solar cell

The first step is to cut a piece of the copper sheeting that is about the size of the burner on the stove. Wash your hands so they don't have any grease or oil on them. Then wash the copper sheet with soap or cleanser to get any oil or grease off of it. Use the sandpaper or wire brush to thoroughly clean the copper sheeting, so that any sulphide or other light corrosion is removed.

Next, place the cleaned and dried copper sheet on the burner and turn the burner to its highest setting.

As the copper starts to heat up, you will see beautiful oxidation patterns begin to form. Oranges, purples, and reds will cover the copper.

As the copper gets hotter, the colors are replaced with a black coating of cupric oxide. This is not the oxide we want, but it will flake off later, showing the reds, oranges, pinks, and purples of the cuprous oxide layer underneath.

The last bits of color disappear as the burner starts to glow red.

When the burner is glowing red-hot, the sheet of copper will be coated with a black cupric oxide coat. Let it cook for a half an hour, so the black coating will be thick. This is important, since a thick coating will flake off nicely, while a thin coat will stay stuck to the copper.

The World’s Largest Rooftop Solar Installation 12 Megawatts of Power


Solar power is being increasingly used all over the world as a source of clean, renewable energy. In an effort to increase its renewable energy resources, General Motors has recently made it known that the biggest rooftop solar photovoltaic power installation will be set up on its Zaragoza automobile assembly plant.
This plant, in Figueruelas, Zaragoza, Spain, will have approximately 85,000 solar panels, covering a rooftop area of around 2,000,000 square feet. General Motors estimates that the set up will be complete by the autumn of this year, and will generate something like 15.1 million kWh of power a year. That’s about how much 4,575 Spanish homes with an average yearly consumption of 3,300 kWh will use.
Glad to take the lead in using renewable energy, the Group Vice President of Global Manufacturing and Labor Relations, General Motors, Gary Cowger said, “The Zaragoza project demonstrates proof that GM is actively accelerating our efforts to be part of the solution to the environmental issues and challenges facing our world. We are proud to be a global leader in the usage of renewable energy.”
At present, the General Motors Company already has two of the biggest rooftop solar power installations in the United States of America. Both these installations are in California ““ one in their parts warehouse in Rancho Cucumonga and another in their parts warehouse in Fontana. The Rancho Cucumonga installation was set up in the autumn of 2006 and was the first public solar project over one mega watt in the country. Here, about half the power requirements of the parts warehouse is met by solar energy. The Fontana installation was set up in December 2007 and offers an annual output of approximately 1.3 million kilowatt hours of electricity ““ that’s about how much power 200 homes will consume in a year.
The General Motors Vice President for Environment, Energy and Safety Policy, Elizabeth A. Lowery explains GM’s stance. “As we develop new solutions in vehicle propulsion to reduce carbon emissions, we are also making significant progress in reducing the impact our facilities have on the environment. Our commitment to expanding the usage of renewable energy sources is part of our coordinated global effort to reduce energy, water consumption, waste and CO2 emissions,” she says.
As far as the Spanish Zaragoza installation is concerned, General Motors is working in collaboration with the Government of Aragon, Clairvoyant Energy and Veolia Environmental to expand their consumption of renewable energy. The thin film flexible solar laminates required for the installation will be UNI-SOLAR(R: 70.08, +2.97, +4.42%), manufactured by United Solar Ovonic. The installation will be created, owned and operated by Veolia Environment and Clairvoyant Energy, who will lease the rooftop area from General Motors. Not only will the Zaragoza rooftop solar power installation cut costs for General Motors, it will also ease the power burden on the local power grid.
David Hardee, the CEO of Clairvoyant Energy is pleased with the project and its implications. “Clairvoyant Energy is delighted to be working with GM as we share their vision of reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Our company goal is to create a variety of solar electricity solutions as compared to fossil fuel electricity processes by 2014 and the way to get there is through lower costs and higher efficiency.”
Global industry leader in a world leader in environmental services, Veolia Environment will be involved in the engineering, construction, approval and system operations maintenance of the installation.
General Motors is certainly thinking green. The company is also one of the major consumers of landfill gas in America. This gas, which is produced as waste decomposes, is used by GM at their assembly plants in Fort Wayne, Shreveport and Orion and three other facilities, saving a quantity of energy equal to the annual energy needed to heat 25,000 households. GM gets an annual saving of over $5 million with their landfill gas set up.
General Motors with an NYSE standing of 10.78, +0.54, +5.27% has been a world leader in auto sales for nearly 80 years. The company was started in 1908 and now has a 266,000 strong team. Last year, GM sold almost 9.37 million Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn, Vauxhall and Wuling cars. OnStar, GM’s subsidiary, are experts in vehicle safety, security and information services.

SolarCity Provides San Francisco Electricity at Less than Grid Price


Lyndon Rive is the chief executive officer of SolarCity, a startup that leases solar panels to property owners. He encourages San Francisco residents to consider and take definitive action on going for solar energy.
Solar energy became a viable proposition in the city, even for those with less financial clout, due to incentive schemes launched by the authorities in July..
The incentive program for San Francisco extends monetary support, to be utilized for the installation of solar panels, ranging from $3000 to $6,000 to property owners, $10,000 to businesses and non-profit organizations and $30,000 to non-profit entities which provide low cost housing. The program is scheduled to stay in effect for a decade.
This drive to encourage the use of solar power complements a matching program to offer a discount of $1.90 per installed watt and also 30 percent federal investment tax credit (ITC) for solar power. These incentives spell good times for even the less financially privileged in their attempt to opt for solar energy as an alternative.
Rive states that a majority of San Francisco residents pay a differential rate for their energy usage- those who consume more power have to pay a higher rate. The rates range between 12 cents per kilowatt-hour and 36 cents per kilowatt-hour, depending, of course, on consumption.
Before opting for solar energy, most clients of SolarCity have had to pay between 23 cents and 31 cents per kilowatt-hour for electrical power. But with the advent of the incentive package, even consumers who had paid as low as 12 cents per kilowatt-hour for electricity can be expect to make savings upon opting for solar panels- according to Rive.
“For as low as $25 per month, you can get a 2.4-kilowatt capacity system,” he said.
Chris Clark, who lives in Inner Sunset, a misty area in San Francisco, is almost through with concluding a lease agreement with SolarCity. “It‘s going to reduce our bill significantly with the city rebate, probably 40 percent,” he said. Clark, who has to spend around $120 per month, on electricity bills, is expected to cut it down to $70 per month once SolarCity installs his system in August.
John Stubblebine, who belongs to Cupertino, California, had solar panels fitted out on his roof by SolarCity about a month back. He chose to pay an initial amount of 8 percent on the $35,000, 6-kilowatt solar panel system.
“You can choose to pay zero, 8, or 16 percent of the system. Since I chose to put in a slightly more expensive system, there would be a slightly higher rate without a down payment,” he said.
The immediate upshot of his investment was a reduction of his electricity bill from $158 per month to $116 per month. However, he noted that he was still required to pay a token charge to Pacific Gas and Electric for meter readings. Further, the rates he is required to pay for electricity have been altered from a static rate to one which depends on usage, with maximum rates applicable during the midday, when demand is generally highest.
“You settle your bill with PG&E by the end of the year. If you‘ve used more electricity than you produced, you pay all that. If you‘ve used less, you don‘t get money back,” he explained.
SolarCity, since its inception in 2007, has had enviable growth- from two employees to almost 300 currently- and harbors hopes of at least recording a 100 percent increase on its 30 million dollar profits for the current year.
Despite competition from Bay Area newbies like Sun Run, Clean Power Finance and GroSolar, SolarCity has extended its presence to places like Arizona and Oregon, with plans to cover the East Coast as well by 2009.

Solar Panels

Solar panels convert sunlight into electricity. They are made of semiconductors, most commonly the semiconductor silicon.

Some solar panel materials are:

Single crystal silicon
Multicrystalline silicon
Amorphous silicon
Gallium Arsenide
Silicon Nitride
Copper Indium Diselenide
Cadmium Telluride
Titanium Dioxide and Dye

Unique Business Seeks To Popularize Solar Power



Blake Jones had such strange ideas for his company, Namaste Solar Electric, that he confused many business analysts. Jones, whose company sets up solar power systems in Colorado, had this to say, “We did have a lot of skeptical, raised eyebrows at the beginning.”
“We even have had business schools bring teams of MBA students to come to do a case study,” Jones said.
Industry watchers were thoroughly perplexed by some of his company policies:
All company operations would have to be environmentally friendly.
Employees would have six weeks’ paid holiday.
A mechanism called FOH (standing for: frank, open, honest) would be in force in order to remove idle talk and ill will.
All workers, irrespective of their assigned duties, would be entitled to the same pay scale.
One percent of yearly incomes to be spent for the upkeep of solar panels gifted to social groups.
Landmark decisions made by the company to be based on participation of all employees of the company.
Jones probably hit upon some of the offbeat ideas of his company based on the collective experience he gathered during the process of his recovery from serious financial distress. Namaste is a Sanskrit word that is uttered whilst greeting and means “bow to you.” Blake, a civil engineer, was engaged by Brown and Root, a subsidiary of Halliburton, belonging to the oil and gas sector, and spent five years working in the Middle East.
“But something in me realized there is something more. I didn‘t like the overdependence that we have on oil and gas. I think oil and gas, even coal are always going to be a very big part of our lives. But I think what we need to do, is we need a more balanced portfolio. I had a gradual awakening to wanting passionately to work with renewable energy because I thought there was a better way,” Jones said.
He traveled from the Middle East to Nepal and spent three years there installing solar and hydroelectric power units in far flung regions.
Although Jones has to cater to entirely different customer requirements in Colorado, solar energy is gaining acceptance as a viable and long-term investment in the state.
Jones selected a place where the residents are habituated to doing things differently. Boulder is an intensely forested land and offered ample scope for the use of renewable forms of energy.
“There is more interest in solar in Boulder then anywhere else in Colorado. That‘s one example of how environmentally focused our community is,” said Sarah Vanpelt, who is in charge of looking after the environmental concerns of the city.
State incentives that would make possible enhanced usage of renewable sources of energy received the approval of Colorado voters in 2004.
“And Boulder provides a rebate on a portion of the sales and use tax that property owners pay to purchase and install a system, and we use those funds to provide grants to nonprofits to install solar on affordable housing, low-income housing, and on nonprofit facilities,” Vanpelt said.
“So I think we will continue to see growth in the green industry and in renewable energy, both solar and wind,” she said.
Namaste is currently undergoing revamping of its warehouse spanning 15000 square feet in order to house its offices.
It’s adhering to the most stringent standards set forth by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification in this endeavor. This implies use of skylight, recycled construction material and making the building reachable by public transportation.
Also, there is no doubt that the building’s energy requirements will be met by solar units that Namaste specializes in. Outside of a solar awning, most of the solar panels will be installed on the roof.
Marc Smerekanicz, construction manager, had to put in some well thought out ingenuity on his part in order to cater to requests to comply with LEED standards.
“Thinking in a different way than what I was brought up to think of as the construction process, that‘s the way of the future,” Smerekanicz said.
The last three and a half years have seen Namaste doing more business than any other company in Colorado. The company has expanded from just three employees to 45 and revenue growth has taken a soar beyond all expectations.
“Whatever perspective you look at, we‘re being profitable, and it‘s exactly what we need to do to prove that our business experiment, that our company model is going to work,” Jones said.

Lagunitas School District to Have Largest Solar Energy Facility in West Martin

Lagunitas School District will be among the first schools in California to implement solar energy. The school district is planning to inaugurate the solar facility that has been installed in the campus in August this year. The installation and implementation has been done in partnership with Solar Power Partners, California, an energy company specializing in renewable energy sources like solar power. The solar facility that the company has installed in.
Lagunitas will account for almost 65% of the school’s power requirements.
The deal, a Power Purchase Agreement, between the two parties is of 15 year duration, and was developed by Solar Power Partners. The company has ownership rights to the solar facility. The deal was struck in April 2008, and the facility will be ready for operation as soon as August 2008, a mere four months later.
The facility is a 58.52 kilowatt (kW DC) one, and is expected to generate around 86,000 kilowatt hours (kWh). The Lagunitas School District solar facility will have carbon dioxide emissions of approximately 70 metric tons a year, which is roughly equivalent to the carbon dioxide emissions that are released through the use of 7,600 gallons of gasoline. These numbers have been determined and published by the United States Environment Protection Agency.
“We chose Solar Power Partners because of their expertise and ability to assess our needs quickly,” said Lawrence H. Enos, Superintendent, Lagunitas School District. “They have established a dependable renewable energy system that would not only cost zero out of pocket today, but would help protect the school district against increasing electricity prices. Beyond providing a solution that our school district could never afford on its own, SPP is helping us teach our students how innovation, finance, government, and good will can all come together for the benefit of generations to come.”
Solar Power Partners worked in collaboration with Borrego Solar, using the company’s products for the project. Borrego Solar supplied photovoltaic modules that were sources from Evergreen Solar in the project. These US-made modules apparently have the smallest carbon footprint in comparison to other similar products.
The idea of the power Purchase Agreement is to allow various organizations to install solar facilities at a much lower cost, using tax credits to reduce the capital investments. It also has the advantage of being able to provide power at sustainable and predictable energy levels. This particular Power Purchase Agreement, with a duration of 15 years, will cut back costs at Lagunitas School District to the tune of $110,000. This figure has been arrived at considering cumulative savings, and in the same way, if the school decides to leverage its extension options, the savings could well total up to more than $420,000.
“We have developed a flexible solution that is designed to fit the stringent requirements of school administrators,” said Alexander V. Welczeck, president, Solar Power Partners. “It should never come down to a question of whether a school can purchase a book or help save the planet. We”˜re glad we could set a practical example of affordable sustainable energy for both the public and private sector.”
Solar Power Partners is known to integrate the latest technologies, along with expertise and best practices of the solar energy industry. The company leverages the financing strength that can be gained through the use of Power Purchase Agreements allowing various building owners the facility to achieving energy independence with lower costs.
Borrego Solar Systems is a solar developer, designer and installer of grid-connected solar electric systems for commercial, government and residential purposes. The photovoltaic systems of Borrego Solar are proficient, consistent and economical.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Electric Company Signs Historic 800 MW Solar Power deal with OptiSolar SunPower



Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), a subsidiary of PG&E Corporation, recently announced that it has made an agreement with Topaz Solar Farms LLC, a subsidiary of OptiSolar Inc and High Plains Ranch II, LLC, a subsidiary of SunPower Corporation. This significant contract is a double utility-scale, photovoltaic (PV) solar power deal for 800 megawatts (MW) of renewable energy.
Ultimately, this collaboration is expected to produce 1.65 billion kilowatt-hours of renewable energy per year. Such an amount of energy would in fact be able to power 239,000 residential homes annually.
PG&E has linked up with Topaz Solar Farms to produce 550 MW of thin-film PV solar power and will generate the remaining 250 MW of solar energy needed from its tie-up with the High Plains Ranch II.
“These landmark agreements signal the arrival of utility-scale PV solar power that may be cost-competitive with solar thermal and wind energy,” said Jack Keenan, chief operating officer and senior vice president for PG&E.
“We will continue to explore such innovative technologies as we aggressively work to increase the amount of renewable energy we provide our customers,” he added.
The Topaz Solar Farm project aims to use low-cost, thin-film PV panels from OptiSolar to deliver its 550 MW of solar energy annually. This would mean that the company is undertaking to produce, 100,000 megawatt-hours of renewable power per year.
The project is expected to make its first delivery in 2011 and then be in full production two years later.
“We are very happy to be working with PG&E to help meet California’s requirements for clean, renewable energy and are committed to working closely with the local community as this project moves forward,” said Randy Goldstein, chief executive officer of OptiSolar.
“Our solar farms are quiet and emission-free, with solar panels mounted near ground level to minimize visual impact. Implementing cost-competitive solar power on this scale establishes thin-film photovoltaic generation as an important contributor to global sustainability,” Goldstein stated.
SunPower’s California Valley Solar Ranch is to deliver a much lesser load of solar power in comparison to OptiSolar. The 250 MW of solar power will first be delivered in 2010, a whole year ahead of OptiSolar and will produce about 550,000 megawatt-hours of solar electricity per year. SunPower expects to be in full production of the renewable energy requirements by the year 2012. The ranch plans to use crystalline PV solar cells from SunPower which will supply 50 percent more energy than the normal crystalline cells.
“Today, high-efficiency photovoltaic technology is a competitively-priced component of utility-scale peak power generation,” said Tom Werner, chief executive officer of SunPower.
“Our experience constructing more than 350 megawatts of solar systems on three continents allows us to deliver utility-scale systems quickly and at a scale of hundreds of kilowatts to hundreds of megawatts. We design our solar systems to maximize energy harvest while adapting to the natural topography of the site and serving the needs of the community,” he concluded.
The Pacific Gas and Electric Company is one of the largest combined natural gas and electric companies in the United States. The past six years have seen the company take giant strides towards renewable energy and has linked up with several companies to produce more than 3,600 MW of renewable power. Of this, the solar energy contracts provide a total of 2,500 MW of renewable power. For the future, the company has even bigger plans looking towards wind power, biomass and geothermal energy sources. Currently, the company caters to more than 15 million people in northern

Residential Solar Panels

Residential Solar Panels are the most discussed topic among science lovers and scientist across the world. We are all aware of how Global Warming is going to eat into our own personal lives. Oil prices are rising day by day. We are facing a huge shortage of fossil fuels. Pollution is also increasing on a daily basis. The toxic chemicals released by cars, factories and other day to day activities or events would surely lead to the end of the world very soon. If we really want to provide our children with a safe and secured future then we have to switch to residential solar panels. If every household in a society decided to shift to residential solar energy instead of the normal electricity then we both save a lot of money and also provide our mother nature with a sigh of relief.


There are various sorts of residential solar panels available in the market. We need to first understand why and for what purpose do we need a solar panel. Then we need to buy a solar panel whether readymade from a branded shop or by the parts so that we can assemble it. If you love to do it yourself then DIY Solar panels are also there in the market. All you need is access to proper clear sunlight. The rest can be taken care off. Residential solar panels would save almost half your monthly electricity bills. It would also mean no wastage of energy. Now you can be free from regular power cuts. Residential solar panels come in various shapes and sizes. They are also of different category. Everything depends on our requirement and how much we are ready to invest initially. If you produce more energy then you actually need in that particular day then you can easily transfer the electricity to the main grid. Prevent children from playing near the solar panels. They might harm it easily. The panel can be divided into three parts, the frame, the battery and the converter. Residential solar panels are also very flexible and can be moved from one lace to the other. The residential solar panel is to be kept away from dirt and pollution. To maintain it properly all we need to do is clean it and wipe it regularly so that the efficiency of the panel is always at a high.


If you ever think that you do not want to continue with this panel then you can also easily sell it. But he would only be a fool if he actually lands up selling the panel. The residential solar panel would help one save a lot of his hard earned money. It would also help your children enjoy the benefits. By using solar panel you could be a proud member or contributor to this new revolution. Go Green!

Friday, August 13, 2010

You Are Capable To Attain A Suitable And Efficient Project Of Home Solar Energy


Even if you are a newbie with DIY projects, the DIY solar water heater is still a good project for you to perform. There are various levels of difficulty that can be built, depending on what kind of project you are undertaking. Regardless of your level of expertise, you will be able to find a suitable project that is positive for both your requirments and your level of experience. There are dissimilar options for DIY solar water heaters and the easiest among these are batch water heaters. These are designed so that the parts you requrie are obtainable at your neighborhood hardware store. The different options include varying designs that can be adapted to suit your specific needs or personal taste. The batch water heater uses a water tank that is placed where it will heat the power using the sun’s energy. This is then connected to your home’s plumbing system. You want the sun’s heating of the water to be as efficient as possible, and you may need to obtain a little creative to implement this.

The first aspect is to have your water tank painted a black matte color. Since black absorbs lights, this assists the tank to absorb and hold as much heat as possible. Beyond this you will desire to take stock of what is available to you and get creative. A lot of people encase the batch water heater in a basic glass box. This creates an insulated area near the water heater that will also help to hold the heat in. Some individuals get even more creative. Some DIY solar water heaters incorporate movable mirrors situated strategically around the water tank. The suns rays then put on these mirrors and are reflected onto the system, improving the surface area that will be heated. These mirrored systems are the most effective ones as the greatest surface area is used, assisting the tank to make the most use of the sun’s rays.

Making homemade solar energy is not as complicated as you may think and creating them yourself can economize you hundreds or even thousands of dollars over purchasing panels that are already assembled. There are some different options when it comes to making your own, you can build them from scratch using free information off of the internet, and there are also several positive websites that have DIY kits, which we will talk briefly about. There are some fundamental components to homemade solar panels. You require the solar cells themselves, which you can find from various outlets, the cut-priced you are about to find them in the web on various online sources. Then there is the frame work, power inverter and storing batteries. Depending on your individual requirements, you are going to set two to five panels to supply the minimum energy for an average home.

Great Methods Opportunities To Convert The Solar Energy Into Effective Advantage


ow can you obtain advantages from applying solar water heater at the current time? When you have this system at home, this will finish being much more effective compared to a standard model. By using solar, you are able to save as much as eighty percent to provide more for your family on a yearly basis. The old-fashioned techniques could turn out to be extremely dangerous and at the same cause you to waste money. This could surely become one of the best investment solutions you will make in your life, especially if you are planning to sell your house in the future; taking into account that this system is becoming very much popular. Another great benefit is the fact the government is now providing tax credit for homeowners possessors who are switching to these systems. When your system is properly attached, it is possible to get tax credit which equals about thirty percent of the actual cost for installation. In the event that you are on a strict spending finances monthly, this could be beneficial as this will allow you to reduce your great monetary burden. In the event that you decide to change to solar, it is real that you can significantly reduce your heating bill by as much as seventy percent which makes it simpler for you to manage your monthly installments.

The homemade solar panels should be facing the course of the southeast or southwest direction. Sometimes even two panels can be made use, but the fixing costs can be too costly. We can make use of this panel throughout summer and extract as much solar power as possible. These domestic solar panels are really effective as they utilize the dual-coil storage cylinder to heat up the water. A 200 liters storage cylinder is enough. These panels are made from silicon and they convert the solar energy into renewable energy in the form of electricity. There are also no CO2 emissions. There are two types of solar panels accessible one is flat panel arrays and the other is evacuated tubes. Evacuated tubes are more effective in getting the solar energy. These tubes are extremely durable. This tube allows maximum absorption. They can withstand very high temperatures. The evacuation of the gasses forms a vacuum.

The vacuum averts heat loss from the tubes. The outer tube remains cold whereas the temperature inside the tube can be more than 150C. The productivity of the evacuated tubes preponderates the performance of flat panel models because they collect maximum solar energy in making your very own solar panels, then it is beneficial to do research online and obtain as much information as real that can assist you on different web sources. This can save your finances and as well as the ecology by constructing your own domestic solar panels.

Afford The Solar Power Into Your Home Applying Solar Panels


However, if you live in cold climates you may recognize that the batch water heater is perhaps not a good option for you. If you encounter long time spans of below freezing temperatures then you will definitely need to elude the batch system. Cold climates and freezing temperatures can make batch heaters to break. Batch heaters in colder climates must be drained during the winter to protect them. Therefore, if you reside in a colder climate you should look into one of the other a lot of alternatives obtainable for DIY solar water heater. One alternative is a closed loop system. With a closed loop system the water is in invariable movement, never having the chance to freeze and cause harm. Nevertheless, closed loop systems are more technical and require perfect plumbing knowledge so you should solely try it if you get a lot of DIY experience.

The perfect thing about this type of system is that they will reduce your energy cost and reduce your carbon footprint so they are perfect for the environment. Most of DIY solar water heaters can be made for less than $1200, meaning that it will not take long before your investment pays for itself and you will get a fun creating this contemporary, money-saving system. As for the home solar panels you can buy various sizes of cells, but to save time soldering them together, you should try to find 3″x6″ mono-crystalline cells, and you are going to need 36 of these for a standard panel. Each cell is going to be out about half a volt, so you will be putting out around 18 volts per panel. You need to be being extremely attentive when using these cells, because while they are potent, they are friable. You are going to have to solder the cells together in a series, then solder each series to get the desired output. It is a good concept to buy a voltage meter, and when you have them all together, take them out in the sun and test the ends to be certain you did it right.

Then you need to mount the sections into the frame, and cover it with the Plexiglass. Until they are safe in the frame, you really need to be being attentive when handling the cell panels themselves. Then when every thing is implemented and tested, you can decide on where to place the homemade solar panels to afford the power. It is ideal to find somewhere that gets at least 8-10 hours of sunlight, a lot of people put them on their roof. If you want to get actualy fancy you can purchase brackets and electric motors that tilt the panels towards the sun no matter what part of the day it is.

To Get Solar Energy And Its Great Productivity

In some kinds of heater, the solar is more thrifty and environmental amicable too since you use the natural heating system. What is important in here is the sunshine not the temperature. And regarding the price of solar water heater, this changes depending on the size of your tank and solar collection capacity. It has variety of configurations and each changes in designs, cost and level of intricacy where most of the systems have back up water heating such as gas or electricity. The solar water heaters consist of the following: hot water storage tank, solar collector which absorbs energy from the sun, pump and controls, back up energy source. There are several types of solar gatherers: The absorber plate which is mounted in a casing that has a firm covering and insulation to avert the absorber plate from the heat loss. Evacuate tube collectors where in it includes range of tubes that includes heat pipe to absorb energy and transfer it to a liquid medium.

Integral collector and storing system fixing the function of hot water storing and solar energy collection into a one unit. Take note that the majority of the solar collectors are roof mounted to which solar energy heaters are utilized for domestic hot water, space heating requirements and pool heating. Do you want to attain solar in the home? To attain homemade solar energy, you need to factor in the price of solar panels, and other equipment, and this can be implemented through a number of approaches. In this short article, you will soon discover some great data on how to find the best prices, as well as working out the cost. The primary thing to keep in mind, when you are buying solar energy, is that you keep in mind to remember that there are all different prices for different brands and models. Solar energy is scalable, so more needs scaling up from a smaller power. This can be performed first with a choice. That alternative is whether to power your entire home or a portion of your energy requirements.

First, you will need to figure out your requirements. Getting your most recent energy bill, and looking at the electricity used, is a perfect way to work out your energy needs over a time span of a day to three days. Dividing this utilization will give you the information you need for your needs. The next step is to put some time into finding all the equipment. Keep in mind that this is scalable and the results can be massive. With so a lot of options to purchasing this equipment, you will get benefits with different alternatives. The cost of solar panels and other equipment, and then there is the price of a kit, and kits can be a great way to get begin and have everything that works together.

AZUR Solar and Pakistan

Azur Solar GmbH, a well reputed German solar company, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Raza Impex Pvt Ltd Pakistan during the visit of the Prime Minister of Pakistan Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani to Germany. The signing ceremony was attended by the officials of German Ministry of Economics and officials of Pakistan Board of Investment (BOI).

The two companies have agreed to enter into a joint venture for installation of a 50 mega watt solar power plant in Pakistan. Mr. Bernd Sauter, CEO, signed the MOU on behalf of Azur Solar whereas Mr. Zafar Hussain, CEO, and Mr. Khurram Bilal, Managing Finance Partner signed it on behalf of Raza Impex Pakistan. The signing was witnessed by the Board of Investment of Pakistan.

Board of Investment (BOI) Chairman, Mr. Saleem H. Mandviwalla, and Honorary Investment Counsellor of BOI in Germany, Mr. Sikander Mir-Kohler, have played a very active and effective role in bringing the private sectors of the two countries closer together in an unusual way.Furthermore Mr. Mir-Kohler is determined to offer one window facilitation services for an early and solid realisation of the project.

The signing of this MOU will bring German technology and know-how to Pakistan in the area of alternative energy. Presently Pakistan is facing acute shortage of electricity and the Democratic Government of Pakistan encourages renewable energy to bridge the short fall and to provide local people with cheap and affordable energy.

The Prime Minister of Pakistan is in Germany for a two-day state visit and to attend the 50 Years of Bilateral Investment Treaties Conference organized by the German Government. In 1959 Pakistan and Germany signed the first ever Bilateral Treaty of the World.

Germany is a very important investment partner of Pakistan and many German companies are operating in Pakistan. The two countries have replaced their 50-year-old Bilateral Investment Treaty (BIT) with a more dynamic and pragmatic Investment Treaty which was signed in Berlin in the presence of Pakistani Premier and German Chancellor. The new Treaty envisages a dynamic era of investment relations between the two countries. The signing of the MOU between Azur Solar and Raza Impex is a very significant example for stepping again into the pioneer footprints of the relationship of both countries

You Are Capable To Attain A Suitable And Efficient Project Of Home Solar Energy

Even if you are a newbie with DIY projects, the DIY solar water heater is still a good project for you to perform. There are various levels of difficulty that can be built, depending on what kind of project you are undertaking.

German firm to build 50 MW solar power station

he project will be completed by the next year with a cost of 200 million Euro.

A decision to this effect was taken at a meeting chaired by the Adviser to the Sindh Chief Minister on Investment, Zubair Motiwala, with the officials of the Azur Solar here on Monday at the office of the Sindh Board of Investment statement.

The German firm had already signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Sindh in this respect.

It was stated that the German government and the firm Azur Solar will initially set up a 60 KV solar power station to provide free electricity to backward 'goths' of Badin and to schools and basic health centres.

Before the meeting, the German delegation inspected the site of 50 MW solar power station at Dhabeji.

It was informed that the German firm will complete the pilot project in the next few months.

Is Green Energy For Me

Existing type of alternative energy alternative energy. Every day, 365 days per year The sun gives us energy in the form of light and heat all year long. A major part of this energy remain unused, while instead we burn carbon fuels, which in trun is become scarce and therefore more expensive to provide.

Things To Remember For Effectiveness Of Utilizing Solar Energy

The idea is that the boiler won’t need use as much electricity, as the water is already hot from the solar water heater. The best tactics to build either one of these systems can be found in many basic solar power manuals. However, it’s important to count exactly how much energy you can save before

Building Your Own Residential Solar Panels

Utilizing the facility of the sun with a view to generate electrical energy for home use is without doubt one of the most popular strategies, and has been for decades now. The problem is that having the panels professionally installed is out of reach for most homeowners. So for a very long time many householders

Solar lighting


One of the main reasons daylight saving time began was to save energy. The reasoning behind this observance was that the least amount of electricity is used while people are in bed, sleeping (no lights, etc.) By springing time forward, the duration between sunset and bedtime is lessened. The brighter it is before bedtime, the lesser lighting will be necessary for daily business.

Solar lighting in the home provides free, renewable energy with every flick of a light switch. Solar energy is not simply renewable, but also inexhaustible. It is interesting to consider that, were everyone to utilize the sun's free energy for lighting and general electricity, one of the purposes for observing daylight saving time would be gone.

Of course, the extra light available in the evenings may be enough of an advantage to keep daylight saving time around. Regardless, many would simply appreciate the savings which the use of solar lighting produces.

This is true on an individual scale as well as on a governmental one. There have been many cultural and political initiatives taken to reduce energy use before and since the conception of daylight saving time. The United States has had varying energy policies since the colonial days, beginning with standard procedure for timber and coal use. In more recent years, three energy policy acts have been passed in 1992, 2005, and 2007.

It is never too soon to start saving money in terms of energy costs. Solar lighting can aid with this by reducing reliance on fossil fuels and the electrical grid. In addition to this, it works to save the environment. There is no risk of depleting the planet’s resources, nor any production of harmful waste or emissions.

The use of solar lighting may simply be a cost effective choice, or it can be used to make a statement about responsible energy use. It is also possible the buyer is simply fascinated with new technological advancements. Whatever the reason, installing solar lights at a home or building can spread interest in solar technology to other members of a community. The more people are exposed to a 'novel' idea, the less novel and more reasonable it becomes. This would increase energy benefits on a wider scale.

Solar Panels

Solar panels are one of the basic components of any photovoltaic system. At Solarhome.org we carry a variety of panels from top manufacturers such as GE, Evergreen, Sharp, and Schott. But panels themselves are only a part of what it takes to run a PV system. In order to succeed, you will need several other components as well as a realistic assessment of your energy goals and current usage.

Your current usage is probably the single most important fact to bring into the discussion of obtaining solar power. Knowing what you use will allow you to accurately assess how many solar panels it would take to meet part or all of that usage. Looking at your current usage also gives you a great idea of what steps you can take to reduce your power consumption.

In addition to solar panels, a good PV system includes an inverter, batter storage/backup, and possibly a grid tie-in. An inverter is necessary because your panels produce direct current, while your home uses alternating current. It is important to remember that the conversion from DC to AC does take a voltage hit, so you will need to budget extra power to ensure that enough is left after the transfer to meet your needs.

Battery backup allows you to run off of solar power even when the sun is down. Studies have shown that peak power usage lasts from about 6pm to midnight in most areas. This is when everyone gets home, turns on the TV, the oven, lights, what have you. For most of the year, half of the 6-12 timeframe is too dark to produce meaningful power. To get around this, solar systems can store excess power they produce in batteries and then use that power once it is needed.

Solar Electric panels


Solar electric panels are high- efficiency, low maintenance ways to turn sunshine into usable electricity right at the location of the power demand.

Solar electric panels, or photovoltaic (PV) panels, are mounted in an unshaded area facing south, southeast, or southwest for use in a home or business that is already supplied with utility power or a home or cabin that is located a distance from power lines.

About the Grid Tie
Solar electric panels which are used in a system that already has utility power is called a ‘grid tie.’ These systems use no batteries but co-exist with the current utility grid, providing the best of both worlds. Solar panels that are used on a home or cabin that does not already have utility power is called an off- grid application. These systems use batteries to store power for night use and cloudy days, providing an independent, stand- alone system.
High Noon Offers Flexibility
High Noon Solar is highly experienced with solar electric design and installation of both types of applications, grid tie and off grid. Follow the links below to learn more about the solar electric system that best fits your situation and needs.

Solar energy systems in Pakistan


Many friends have enquired about availability of solar electric systems in Pakistan. I tried to contact many companies, claiming to have such systems including Siemens Pakistan, they did respond to my emails but failed to give any further information.

Today there is a news item from APP about the offer from Highnoon Group to electrify one village. I just found their website and have gathered some information from there, which is being posted here. I shall continue my search about solar systems and update visiting friends. I have decided to create a separate category about energy in order to gather all the information under one category because energy is the main issue these days in Pakistan; we have to explore new ways to have cheaper energy sources.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Green Hotels Use Solar Hot Water


More and more commercial operations are turning to renewable energy to green their practices to both save money and the environment. In fact, green hotels use solar hot water to significantly defray operating costs and energy usage.
We’ve written about solar hot water systems incorporated into breweries and dairies – both of which have high hot water demands. It shouldn’t be surprising that hotels and resorts that turn to solar hot water can really cut down on energy demands.
Consider that one of the largest components of hotel operating costs is hot water. Not only is it used by guests to take showers and shave, but significant amounts are demanded each and every day to wash towels and other linens, clean guest rooms and more.

Instead of relying on electricity, natural gas or oil, green hotels can now use solar hot water to maintain profit margins and avoid passing on energy cost increases to their guests. In fact, many properties can expect to save thousands of dollars each year as a result of installing solar hot water.
One company, SunMaxx, has a super solar hot water system for both residential and commercial use. In fact, they can help you develop a solar system to meet the needs of a hotel or resort, including pool and spa heating.
According to its website, a SunMaxx Solar Hot Water System can be used for:
Domestic Hot Water (laundry, cleaning, showers)
Solar Radiant Space Heating
In floor radiant heating
Baseboard radiant heating
Forced hot air heating
Solar Central Cooling / AC Systems
Solar Pool & Spa Heating
Snow / Ice Melting Applications
Sidewalks
Driveways
Parking Lots
Common Public Location

How do Solar Panels Work?


Whether on a solar-powered calculator or an international space station, solar panels generate electricity using the same principles of electronics as chemical batteries or standard electrical outlets. With solar panels, it's all about the free flow of electrons through a circuit.

To understand how solar panels generate electrical power, it might help to take a quick trip back to high school chemistry class. The basic element of solar panels is the same element that helped create the computer revolution -- pure silicon. When silicon is stripped of all impurities, it makes a ideal neutral platform for the transmission of electrons. Silicon also has some atomic-level properties which make it even more attractive for the creation of solar panels.

Silicon atoms have room for eight electrons in their outer bands, but only carry four in their natural state. This means there is room for four more electrons. If one silicon atom contacts another silicon atom, each receives the other atom's four electrons. This creates a strong bond, but there is no positive or negative charge because the eight electrons satisfy the atoms' needs. Silicon atoms can combine for years to result in a large piece of pure silicon. This material is used to form the plates of solar panels.

Here's where science enters the picture. Two plates of pure silicon would not generate electricity in solar panels, because they have no positive or negative charge. Solar panels are created by combining silicon with other elements that do have positive or negative charges.

Phosphorus, for example, has five electrons to offer to other atoms. If silicon and phosphorus are combined chemically, the result is a stable eight electrons with an additional free electron along for the ride. It can\'t leave, because it is bonded to the other phosphorus atoms, but it isn\'t needed by the silicon. Therefore, this new silicon/phosphorus plate is considered to be negatively charged.

In order for electricity to flow, a positive charge must also be created. This is achieved in solar panels by combining silicon with an element such as boron, which only has three electrons to offer. A silicon/boron plate still has one spot left for another electron. This means the plate has a positive charge. The two plates are sandwiched together in solar panels, with conductive wires running between them.

With the two plates in place, it's now time to bring in the 'solar' aspect of solar panels. Natural sunlight sends out many different particles of energy, but the one we're most interested in is called a photon. A photon essentially acts like a moving hammer. When the negative plates of solar cells are pointed at a proper angle to the sun, photons bombard the silicon/phosphorus atoms.

Eventually, the 9th electron, which wants to be free anyway, is knocked off the outer ring. This electron doesn't remain free for long, since the positive silicon/boron plate draws it into the open spot on its own outer band. As the sun's photons break off more electrons, electricity is generated. The electricity generated by one solar cell is not very impressive, but when all of the conductive wires draw the free electrons away from the plates, there is enough electricity to power low amperage motors or other electronics. Whatever electrons are not used or lost to the air are returned to the negative plate and the entire process begins again.

One of the main problems with using solar panels is the small amount of electricity they generate compared to their size. A calculator might only require a single solar cell, but a solar-powered car would require several thousand. If the angle of the solar panels is changed even slightly, the efficiency can drop 50 percent.

Some power from solar panels can be stored in chemical batteries, but there usually isn't much excess power in the first place. The same sunlight that provides photons also provides more destructive ultraviolet and infrared waves, which eventually cause the panels to degrade physically. The panels must also be exposed to destructive weather elements, which can also seriously affect efficiency.

Many sources also refer to solar panels as photovoltaic cells, which references the importance of light (photos) in the generation of electrical voltage. The challenge for future scientists will be to create more efficient solar panels are small enough for practical applications and powerful enough to create excess energy for times when sunlight is not available.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Solar energy changing lives in remote,backward Tharparkar region


Environment-friendly solar energy has changed the lives of several hundred households in Tharparkar, which remains one of the most backward regions of the country.

The Alternate Energy Development Board, Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund and Thardeep Rural Development Programme ñ a non-governmental organisation ñ have joined hands to launch the solar energy project in this arid region at a time when the country faces massive electricity shortage.

In a vast desert region like Tharparkar, where temperature hit a peak of 30-35 degrees Celsius even in winters and touches a high of over 50 degrees Celsius during summers, the scorching rays of sun are usually seen as a bane.

But for the first time, this immeasurable resource is being utilised like any other modern place of the world.

Solar energy is not just providing electricity to the mud-and-straw houses of remote villages, but also helps irrigate small patches of land.

“The electricity has changed our lives,” said Khanno, a 45-year-old farmer, who like most residents of this place uses only one name. “Electricity has extended our day. Now my children can study even after the sunset.”

The solar energy project, launched two years ago, has so far provided electricity to 16 villages at a cost of more than Rs100 million, including the villages of Kasbo, Rarko, Wadhanjowadhio and Oanjowadhio ñ all in Tharparkar district.

Riaz Rajar, an official of Thardeep Rural Development Programme, said that one panel costs around Rs700,000 to Rs800,000.

"We install at least eight such panels in a village, which is a one time investment," he said. "They generate enough electricity to illuminate 20 to 30 houses."

“Pakistan Poverty Alleviation Fund contributes 80 per cent of the funds and the remaining 20 per cent is raised by the local community,” Rajar said.

He said that electricity-run power pumps help pull water from 50 to 150 feet below the surface.

“Apart from drinking, this water is also used for irrigation through drip technique to save wastage and conserve this precious natural resource, which is scarce in this region.”

Scarcity of water in Tharparkar, bordering the Great Indian Desert, impacts the entire population, especially women, who had to walk miles to fetch two buckets of water from the wells.

But electric pumps have made their life easy.

Now solar energy is being used to pull water, which is stored in cement tanks.

Khanno, the farmer, said that thanks to electricity he now manages to cultivate onions and tomatoes on his two acres of once barren land.

According to SciDev, a London-based non-profit organisation, there is no shortage of solar energy across the world. Almost all the developing countries have enormous solar power potential, it said in a report.

Solar energy changing lives in remote,backward Tharparkar region

SOLAR TECHNOLOGY


The Solar Energy Technologies Program focuses on developing cost-effective solar energy technologies that have the greatest potential to benefit the nation and the world. A growing solar industry also stimulates our economy by creating jobs in solar manufacturing and installation.
Photovoltaics

The Photovoltaics subprogram aggressively funds a diverse set of PV technologies that have potential in many markets that will help solar electricity achieve grid parity.
Concentrating Solar Power

The Concentrating Solar Power subprogram is making CSP competitive in the intermediate power market and developing advanced technologies that will reduce system and storage costs through partnerships with solar companies and universities and national laboratories.
Systems Integration

The Systems Integration subprogram addresses the technical barriers to wide-scale deployment of solar technologies on the grid by funding solar companies to develop smarter technologies, supporting testing and demonstration at national laboratories and in the field, developing new codes and standards, and removing economic barriers.
Market Transformation

The Market Transformation subprogram works with cities, states, utilities, and other partners to address barriers to the widespread adoption of solar technologies and reduce the non-hardware costs associated with installation.

Photovoltaics


he U.S. Department of Energy works to provide clean, reliable, affordable solar electricity for the nation through its research programs in photovoltaic (PV) energy systems. The following pages explain the "how's" and "why's" of PV. Whether you are a student, builder, consumer, engineer, or researcher, there is something here for you.

Photovoltaic technology makes use of the abundant energy in the sun, and it has little impact on our environment. Photovoltaics can be used in a wide range of products, from small consumer items to large commercial solar electric systems.

Our goal is to ensure that photovoltaic energy systems make an important contribution to the energy needs of our nation and the world. In these pages, you will learn about DOE's R&D in photovoltaic energy systems.

Advancement in Solar Energy Technology


The atmosphere, oceans and land mass of the Earth absorbs enough energy from the sun in one hour to power the entire planet for one year. Surely we are clever enough to capture some of this magnificent force and use it to fuel our environment.
Solar energy and its use can be divided into two areas. Those are static or passive solar energy collection and dynamic, or perhaps better termed, kinetic solar energy collection and use.
An example of passive solar energy collection would be building a house so that the windows face the morning sun in colder climates. An even more rudimentary example would be that of an alligator sunning himself on the edge of the water. In both cases the sun’s energy is simply absorbed for warmth. And the simplest use of solar energy is as the very daylight we walk about in. Our Earth automatically uses the power of the sun in millions of ways. Not the least of which is photosynthesis by plants for production of oxygen for our atmosphere. Ours is an inherently rechargeable renewable world, provided we use our resources such as solar energy wisely.
To that end, we must examine dynamic solar energy collection for the production of warmth and light.
When you walk though almost any shopping mall built in the last twenty years you will probably notice a flood of bright natural light all around you. Most large malls and department stores are built with double paned insulated windows that allow light to enter yet keep heating or cooling locked inside. But what happens when the sun follows its arc away from those windows? Active solar lighting can use mirrors that track with the sun’s movement and then reflect light into fiber optic cable that can carry that light into any part of our same department store.

We can create transfer warmth through various forms of solar thermal energy. Since the 1950s it has not been uncommon to see simple glass paned boxes filled with copper pipes used to help heat water for swimming pools and boilers. These low temperature collectors are fine for space heating but there are far more effective ways to heat water with the sun’s rays and put that water to work.
High temperature parabolic shaped mirrors can heat water to far greater temperatures than made possible by our simple rooftop hot boxes. In fact bowl and trough type mirrors can boil water to steam which in turn uses a turbine to generate electricity for heating, air conditioning and general power supply. When properly applied, this concentrated solar power can supply 50% of the power needs for a modern factory. Concentrated Solar Power is one half of our method for creating electricity from the sun’s radiant energy.

he most commonly thought of use and form of solar energy conversion is that of relying upon solar voltaic cells. These solar cells are also called photovoltaic. First developed in the 1880s, photovoltaic cells rely upon the electronic reaction of certain key elements to the Sun’s rays so as to produce a tapable flow of electrons that are in turned used to create current flow. In short photovoltaic cells turn sunlight into energy. And lest we think we are so clever for figuring out how to do this, consider that plants have been turning sunlight into energy for millions of years.
Advances in the development of photovoltaic cells have increased drastically since the oil shortages of the 1970s. This is primarily due to development of silicon technologies. Crystalline silicon cells when working in conjunction with CSP (concentrated solar power) as supplied by parabolic mirrors have improved output from Photovoltaic cells by a factor of 50 since their more basic development in 1954. Increases in demand and subsequent increases in production have lowered the price of solar cells to the point that they are now almost competitive with wind power technology and like their low emissions wind counterparts are far less costly than nuclear power.
Development, deployment and economics

Solar Electric power as supplied by huge banks of photovoltaic cells is providing billions of watts of power throughout the world.