In this system, the mirrors are arranged in a parabolic shape, similar to that of a satellite dish, which focuses the heat onto a central receiver mounted above the center of the dish. (see diagram.) The receiver contains an engine known as a stirling engine that converts heat to mechanical power by compressing a cold fluid, which could be water or synthetic oil. The heating of the fluid causes it to expand through a turbine or a piston, which produces mechanical power. An electric generator or alternator then converts the mechanical power into electricity. Large scale electricity is produced by arranging several dishes into a larger array. New power plants using this technology have recently been approved for construction in California. The linear Fresnel system is one of the newest csp technologies. This system is similar to the parabolic trough system, but it uses multiple rows of flat mirrors to focus light onto a set of tubes, increasing the temperature of the heat-transfer fluid.
Performance evaluation of 10 mw grid connected solar photovoltaic
The heat-transfer material, usually synthetic oil or molten salt, is collected in a heat storage unit and eventually used to create steam that powers conventional generators. One advantage of csp prayer is that at night or on extremely cloudy days, the conventional generators can be run on natural gas or petroleum, allowing the plant to continue to generate power when the sun is not shining. All csp plants consist of arrays of mirrors. The first type of csp technology (still used today) works through the use of parabolic troughs, long, curved mirrors that move to follow the path of the sun, and focus the sun's heat onto a tube in front of the mirror. This dramatically increases the temperature of the heat-transfer material, which in turn boils water and creates steam that drives a generator. (see diagram.) Solar power towers, another type of csp technology, were first used at experimental power plants in the california desert during the 1980s and 1990s; improved solar power towers are currently being developed for newer csp plants. In these plants, a large one array of flat mirrors (called heliostats) is focused on a central tower that contains the heat-transfer material. The transfer material is pumped into storage tanks that can contain the heat for up to a day. It is then passed through a heat exchanger, where it produces steam that drives the generators. (see diagram.) Engineers and scientists have recently developed a new form of csp technology called the dish system.
A new technology allows solar panels to be placed on a thin strip of backing, usually aluminum, and covered with a plastic film, which lab decreases the weight and cost of a solar panel. These thin-film solar panels are becoming more common, although traditional glass- or laminate-coated panels continue to make up the majority of the solar panel market. Usually, several panels are arranged into an array, which can be scaled to produce enough capacity to generate the desired amount of power. A single cell can produce enough electricity to power a small device, such as an emergency telephone, but larger arrays are required to power a house or building. Utility-scale photovoltaic plants consisting of thousands of solar panels are a more recent occurrence. Concentrating solar power The first large-scale solar power plants in the United States were concentrating solar power (CSP) plants. Built in the california desert in the 1980s and 1990s, these plants are still among the largest, most powerful solar generating plants in the world. Several plants have also been in operation since the 1980s in the southwestern United States, and many more are currently in the planning and construction stages. Although there are several different csp technologies, they all involve reflecting sunlight onto a focal point that contains a heat-transfer material.
Solar energy is still used to power the International Space Station and the vast majority of satellites. Photovoltaic panels have also proven useful for providing electricity to remote locations that are not supplied by a local electric utility. Photovoltaic power uses solar cells that convert the energy of sunlight directly into electricity through the photovoltaic effect. (see diagram.) The photovoltaic effect is a process by which light from the sun hits a solar cell and is absorbed by a semiconducting material such as crystalline silicon. The photons in the sunlight knock electrons loose from their atoms, allowing them to flow freely through the material to produce direct electric current (DC) electricity. For household or utility use, an inverter must be used to convert the electricity to alternating current (AC). The individual solar cells are arranged onto a solar panel. The solar panel is coated in glass or another laminate to protect the cells from damage.
Report: Solar Power Biggest and Fastest-Growing Power)
In 2009, california had by far the most solar power capacity at 1102 megawatts, followed by new Jersey with 128 megawatts. 8, nearly all states in the United States receive more sunlight per square mile than Germany, the world's leading producer of solar energy. 9, manufacturing of solar power equipment and components is located throughout the United States, with large plants in Massachusetts, michigan, Ohio, oregon, california, wisconsin, tennessee, new Mexico, colorado, georgia, and Texas. Other large solar panel manufacturing facilities are planned to begin construction over the next few years in many states. Methods of solar power generation, there are two basic methods for generating electricity from solar power. The first method uses photovoltaic (PV) solar panels to generate electricity directly from sunlight. The second method is known as concentrating solar power (CSP) and converts sunlight into heat to produce steam, which is then fed through conventional steam-turbine generators to generate electricity.
Photovoltaic panels have traditionally writing been used for smaller scale electricity generation, particularly for residential or commercial use in individual buildings or complexes, while csp is used for utility-scale electricity generation in solar power plants. However, photovoltaic solar plants recently started generating electricity in California, illinois, new Jersey, nevada, and Florida. Csp is also being adapted for smaller scale electricity generation. Photovoltaic solar power Modern photovoltaic solar cells were developed in the 1940s and 1950s, and the technology has evolved rapidly over the past several decades. The space programs of the United States and the soviet Union first used photovoltaic cells as a source of energy to generate electricity for satellites and spacecraft.
It can be used for such purposes as heating water, heating and air conditioning homes and commercial buildings, and powering streetlights. Because sunlight is readily available almost everywhere and doesn't require fuel or a connection to a power grid (an interconnected network used to deliver electricity from suppliers to consumers solar power is particularly useful for supplying power to remote areas and to some portable devices. Solar power is used to generate large amounts of power on a utility scale and to supply individual residences and businesses with electricity. This report focuses mainly on utility-scale, commercial, and residential solar power. Utility-scale solar power plants supply large amounts of electricity to the power grid along with traditional sources of power, such as coal and natural gas plants. Solar power plants typically generate several megawatts of power, comparable to small or medium coal- or gas-fired plants.
Plants only now in the planning stages are expected to produce several hundred megawatts, 7 which would be comparable to a medium to large coal plant or nuclear plant. Commercial solar power is used by business establishments, such as office buildings, warehouses, and retail stores, which are able to install large groups of solar panels known as photovoltaic (PV) arrays, on unused land, rooftops, or parking structures. These panels supplement the building's power supply, and, at times, may generate more electricity than the building consumes. Often, this excess power can be sold back to the local utility company. Residential solar power is generated by homeowners who have solar panels installed on their roofs in order to provide power to their homes. This form of solar power is increasing in popularity. Residential solar power usually must be supplemented by traditional electricity from the power grid to provide additional electricity when the solar panels cannot meet energy needs, such as when it is nighttime or extremely cloudy. Although some areas of the United States are better suited for solar power than others, solar energy can be harnessed in any geographic area because of the sun's vast reach.
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Scientists, for example, are involved in the research and development of new and more efficient materials, and engineers design new systems and improve existing technologies. Manufacturing workers make the equipment used in solar power generation, such as mirrors and panels. Construction workers build solar power plants. Electricians, plumbers, and solar photovoltaic installers surgery install residential and commercial solar projects. The solar foundation estimates that the largest growth in the solar industry in 2011 will be in occupations in solar installation, including photovoltaic installers and electricians and roofers with experience in solar installation. Available solar power energy in the United States. Solar power generation, solar power is a from versatile means of generating electricity.
Solar electric capacity surpassed 2,000 megawatts in 2009, enough to power over 350,000 homes. In 2009 alone, the residential market doubled in size and three new concentrating solar power (CSP) plants opened in the United States, increasing the solar electric market by 37 percent. 2, despite this growth, solar power is still summary a minute portion of total energy generated in the country. In 2009, solar power provided less than 1 percent of total electricity generated in the United States. 3, the bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) does not currently have employment data for the solar power industry. 4, however, the solar foundation, a nonprofit organization that promotes the use of solar energy technologies to help meet the world's energy needs, estimates that in August 2010, 93,000 workers spent more than half of their work hours on projects related to solar power. 5, the solar industry includes workers in science, engineering, manufacturing, construction, and installation.
been used for more than half a century, mostly on a small scale or for specialized purposes, such as generating electricity for spacecraft and satellites or for use in remote areas. Large scale solar generation was mostly developed in the 1970s and 1980s, and is considered a clean energy because of its lack of emissions. Continued growth is expected because solar power has many environmental benefits and is decreasing in price, which will allow it to become increasingly competitive with fossil fuels. The relatively steep cost of solar power compared with traditional sources of electricity generation is caused by the high cost of manufacturing and installing solar panels. However, the cost of solar power has been trending downward as technology has improved and manufacturers have learned how to improve production efficiency. In addition, as solar power generation becomes more widespread, the cost of installing solar-generation capacity will continue to fall. And as the price of fossil fuels increases, solar power will become more cost effective relative to traditional sources of energy. The solar power industry has experienced rapid growth in the past decade. According to the solar Energy Industries Association (seia total.
And as it expands in usage, there will be a growing need for more workers—manufacturing workers to make solar panels, construction workers to build power plants, solar photovoltaic installers to install solar panels, and. This article provides loyalty information on the process of generating solar power and details various occupations in the solar industry. The first section details a brief history of solar power in the United States, followed by an overview of how solar power is generated, which entities use it, and the technology involved in supplying solar power. The second section provides occupational information highlighting a brief job description of several noteworthy occupations that are related to solar power; the credentials needed to work in the occupation, such as education, training, certification, or licensure; and wage data. Occupations are listed under relevant occupational categories such as manufacturing, construction, installation, etc. Using the data from the. Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls occupational Employment Statistics program and the solar foundation, this article represents the second publication in the bureau's green careers series. Growth of solar power in the United States.
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Pdf file of Careers in Solar Power. Other, green Career articles by james Hamilton, bureau of Labor Statistics, james Hamilton is an economist in the Office of Occupational Statistics and Employment Projections, bls. James is available at (202). Sunlight is the most abundant source of potential energy on the planet. If harnessed properly, sunlight could easily exceed current and future electricity demand. According to the. Department of Energy, every essay hour, enough energy from the sun reaches Earth to meet the world's energy usage for an entire year. 1, creating solar power by converting sunlight into electricity would lower emissions from electricity generation and decrease long-term energy costs. As solar power becomes more cost-effective, it has the potential to make up a larger share of growing.