9 reasons to believe in solar power

 

As people whose job it is to know what’s trending in the world of lighting, one thing that we see everywhere these days is a skyrocketing interest in solar power. From phone chargers to powering entire cities, solar energy is everywhere. But despite an increase in interest, there is still quite a bit of misinformation floating around that is worth correcting.

Here we debunk nine of the most often heard myths about solar power:

1. Solar doesn’t work in cool, cloudy, foggy, or harsh climates

Actually, as long as there is light, a solar panel will keep on producing energy. Germany, one of the world leaders in solar energy, ranks very low in irradiation intensity of sunshine, but still produces large amount of solar energy. Solar panels are also more efficient in cooler weather than in high temperatures and a professional system and electronic design could help to harvest more energy from the sunshine.

 

Looking at the science behind the facts, crystalline silicone is sensitive within the spectrum of 350nm and 1150nm. This means that the visible light (spectrum from 380nm to 780nm) and some of infra-red light will generate electricity through photovoltaic panels. Normally. As long as there is a light, solar panel will not stop producing energy.

 

2. Solar panels are high maintenance

Compared to other forms of energy, solar is very low maintenance. Once the panels are installed, they require little to no regular maintenance and cleaning unless they are being used in a dusty environment.

 

3. Solar energy is an expensive solution

Since 2008, the price of solar panels has gone down by 80% and is still on the decline. New solar panels are almost 500 times less expensive to produce than the original solar cells (and the market price is still going down). The energy savings gained from solar solutions make the panels a smart investment. Many countries offer a variety of different tax incentives and rebates to encourage choosing cleaner energy systems. In addition, utility companies that use solar energy can bring down the cost of electricity during peak hours of demand. With all of these combined benefits, solar energy has become increasingly more affordable.

 

4. Solar power is unreliable

As a simple system with no moving parts, solar power has proven to be very durable and reliable. Solar energy is a long-term solution, and the average warranty on solar panels is 15-20 years. Reliability has made solar energy a good choice for industries where power outages can be dangerous, including NASA, the U.S. Military, and other important emergency systems, such as aircraft warning lights.

 

5. Solar energy is inefficient

While this may have been true in the early years of solar technology, efficiency has quadrupled since the 1970s. In the lifetime of a solar panel, it can produce up to 20 times the amount of energy used to produce the panel itself, and efficiency levels are continuously being improved. Solar has efficiency levels similar to gas, but with the benefits of a clean energy source, including preserving Earth’s resources, not polluting the environment with toxins or carbon dioxide, and most importantly, being renewable and inexhaustible. 

 

6. Solar panels are just for powering homes

Solar panels on residential roofs may be the most apparent use of solar power, but in reality solar power is very versatile. Solar power has been harnessed to light up roads and streets, charge electronic devices, heat swimming pools, and even power entire cities in concentrated solar power plants. Another emerging facet of solar power is lighting. Solar-powered light sources, specifically those with LED lights, have been a great solution for off-the-grid neighborhoods. These lights come in many forms, such as streetlights or even portable devices for the home. Solar-powered LED lights are currently helping in the movement to end light poverty as part of the International Year of Light.

 

7. Solar power is a recent invention

Solar panels on residential roofs may be the most apparent use of solar power, but in reality solar power is very versatile. Solar power has been harnessed to light up roads and streets, charge electronic devices, heat swimming pools, and even power entire cities in concentrated solar power plants. Another emerging facet of solar power is lighting. Solar-powered light sources, specifically those with LED lights, have been a great solution for off-the-grid neighborhoods. These lights come in many forms, such as streetlights or even portable devices for the home. Solar-powered LED lights are currently helping in the movement to end light poverty as part of the International Year of Light.

 

8. The solar industry isn’t growing

The solar industry has grown at a rate of almost 20% per year over the past 15 years. In the United States, solar jobs are growing at a faster rate than the overall economy. By 2060, up to one third of the world’s energy could be supplied by solar energy.

 

9. Solar energy couldn’t power the whole world

The sun continuously provides around 173,000 terawatts of energy. That is more than 10,000 times the total energy use in the world. If solar panels covered an area one-fifth the size of France, the sun would provide enough energy for the entire world.

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With all the benefits of solar power in mind, it is certain that solar energy has the capability to change the makeup of any country’s energy portfolio for the better. Clean energy sources are the future of powering the world, and it’s important for companies, such as Philips, to participate in advancing this industry. Solar powered LED lighting systems are the future of lighting and Philips has a variety of products already available and being implemented around the world.

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