Limitless clean energy Part 2
The common solar cells
In fact, solar panels technology, can indeed help to cope with the global climate crisis in the course of several decades. Solar panels based on silicon wafers has long used to generate electricity on a small scale. The main reason for the growing popularity of solar installations that every year the production of solar cells is becoming cheaper and technology more sophisticated.
Working in the solar energy market the Norwegian company "Corporation for renewable energy" (Renewable Energy Corporation, REC) is one of the leading manufacturers of silicon wafers and solar cells. The technical developments proposed by the company, became one of the factors in the significant cost reduction associated with the use of solar energy. According to estimates REC, in regions such as Japan, Australia and California commercial solar energy production to year 2012 will be released on a competitive level even with minimal subsidies from the state, or even those without, and in other world markets it can happen even earlier.
"Over the past ten years, the costs are reduced by almost 10% annually, thanks to the developing technology and the growing volumes of production," says Director of technology development, the company REC, Eric Sauer. He stresses that solar panels are quite easy to install. "It's a quiet, not giving emission technology, there is no threat of moving parts".
In areas with a predominance of Sunny weather such industrialized countries as Spain, Japan and the US, the peak of energy consumption in residential buildings accounts for the hours when the sun shines especially brightly: on hot days the population includes air conditioning to cool the air in the room. It is the ideal starting conditions in order to give impetus to more widespread distribution of silicon solar cells.
Concentrated solar power
Use the energy of sunlight can not only through solar panels or solar thermal installations, but also through so called technology of concentrated solar energy. Many believe this technology is the most promising development in the field of powerful conversion of solar radiation into usable for human needs energy.
In 2006, on flat spaces in the Spanish city of Seville was built 115 meter high concrete tower is the first commercial solar power plant in Europe. On the ground around the solar tower installed 624 moving mirrors which catch and reflect the sun's rays, guiding them to a Central manifold in the top of the tower. Collected in the collector, the sunlight is used to produce steam that drives a turbine connected to a generator. The steam generated can be accumulated for uninterrupted production of electricity even after sunset. Thus solving one of the main problems of solar energy how to ensure continuous energy production with insufficient access to sunlight. It is expected that by 2013 solar power tower will produce enough energy to supply electricity to 180 thousand the entire population of Seville, and reduced emissions of carbon dioxide will be the result of 600 thousand tons annually.
Another very promising technology is concentrated solar energy the so called parabolic concentrators, reflectors having the shape of a satellite dish. "Disc" mirrors heliostats are rotated to follow the sun, focusing solar radiation on the receivers in the Central part of the reflector, where it is absorbed by the material to absorb heat energy. For capturing and converting solar energy you can use several of these mirror a "Solar Park".
Forefront in the application of concentrated solar energy is again Spain, but the Outlook of these technologies is truly global. Researchers with a special interest considering the use of solar collectors concentrators in desert regions because of the amount of solar energy that "falls" on the just desert for six hours, would be enough to provide the energy needs of the entire earth population for a year.
Now the idea is to put the "solar" electricity from the deserts to consumers around the world have ceased to seem extravagant fiction of science fiction. Recently, twelve German companies signed an agreement to build several solar systems concentrators in the Sahara. In plans of developers to provide 15% of the European energy market through the supply of electricity from the Sahara by the underwater cable power transmission lines. One of the Express claims to this project lies in the fact that he requires a large consumption of water in the region, just suffering from lack of it.
However, the solution to this problem can help the "Green Sahara" (Sahara Forest Project) is an innovative idea for the greening of the Saharan desert, invented by British scientists. The essence of the project in merging the two approaches systems of concentrated solar energy and so called "greenhouses on salt water" that can turn sea water into fresh. The combined use of these two technologies will allow to create in the Sahara solar power and at the same time save so scarce in the desert the resource as drinking water.
Many possibilities of bioenergy
It is known that hydropower is one of the types of electricity production, providing the most gentle effect on the environment. What about the other resources available to the person? It turns out that electricity and heat can be produced without environmental damage, using even a simple wood waste.
Electricity generation also forms a certain amount of excess heat, which is transmitted to the district heating boiler operating at the plant. This boiler heats the house, which otherwise was heated by electricity. In General, the bio power plant in produces enough electricity to provide the energy needs of about 500 households.
Of course, not just any wood can be used to generate electricity. Wood is an expensive resource, consisting of many important components. Of them the most valuable trees, used in the manufacture of various products that would otherwise have to produce from petroleum.
Energy of sea waves
Although the technology of generating electricity from the energy of sea tides is not very well developed today in Europe already built several power plants using the natural power of attraction of the sun and the moon, which leads to the formation of tides. Tidal energy is a form of electricity production due to the energy of the waves, which with its power forced to work generators.