What Will a Solar-powered World Look Like?
We have all been feeling the effects of climate change more and more as time progresses. The world is getting hotter and natural calamities are becoming more and more worse. And because of this, we also all know that we must act now to keep our world habitable.
Since we now know that the main cause of climate change is our greenhouse emissions, investing in solar energy seems to be our best course of action regarding this. A solar-powered world seems to be just a question of when. But what would something like that look like? What else does solar energy need to make this a reality?
· Distributed Energy Generation
Currently, our electric grid is designed for centralized energy generation, which means that energy is produced on large power plants. However, with the advent of solar energy where every homeowner can now produce energy right in their very homes, we now realize that our electricity grid will need to be redesigned altogether.
In a solar-powered world, energy will be produced in most roofs. For this, the electric grid will have to be able to support the feed-in of a lot of unused energy and redistribute it to the places that need it.
To achieve this, our electric distribution network has to be redesigned. For one, our old electric meters should be changed to bi-directional meters that can also detect the energy that is coming out of a property. Smart digital meters can do such this, along with improved monitoring, data collection, and troubleshooting.
· Prevalence of the Use of Energy Storage Systems on our Homes
The main disadvantage of solar energy is that it is an intermittent energy source, which means that you can not produce it exactly when you need it. It only takes one rainy or cloudy day to significantly reduce a solar panel’s energy production. If we will rely 100% on solar energy, it needs to be paired with cheap and efficient energy storage systems, particularly batteries.
Today, battery systems are already being used with solar energy to power individual homes. However, the prices of batteries and the state of this technology are not yet at the point where it is feasible to replace your electric grid connection with only solar and batteries. Once such battery that is very commonly used for residential solar is the Tesla Powerwall.
With an energy storage system, the solar energy system will produce more energy in the morning than the house’s daytime consumption. The excess energy will be used to charge the batteries, which will then be used to power the house at night.
· Clean and Cheap Energy for All
Another advantage of solar energy is that it is based on technology rather than a specific fuel, like coal and natural gas. In the same way that computer technology has improved from using vacuum tubes and being as large as a whole room to be very powerful devices that fit in our pockets, solar PV technology is also continuously improving.
Solar panel prices have also continuously dropped exponentially since it was first invented. With time and increased demand, manufacturing processes will scale up, which will eventually make cheaper and cheaper solar panels.
As solar panels become significantly cheaper, energy will also be significantly cheaper and this will help many nations of the world become more progressive and take humanity to the next level.
Together, and with the use of solar energy, let us help make the world a better place. Visit our website, www.andalsolar.com, to join the solar revolution and help the world transition to this cleaner and better energy source.
For aspiring solar PV engineers, you can also check out our Solar PV Engineering Ebook on Amazon on this link.