Wood, natural gas, or heating oil: none of these energy sources would exist without the sun. Millions of years ago, the energy source ensured the growth of biomass – the starting materials for oil and gas. The same is happening today. Because without solar energy, no tree would grow on earth. However, the star’s energy cannot only be used in the form of heating oil, natural gas, or biomass.
How do Solar Panels Work?
There are now a number of other ways in which solar energy can be used for heating, hot water, and electricity. A basic distinction must be made between passive and active solutions, as the following overview shows:
Passive use of solar energy works without additional technology. You can learn more from this website. Here is an example, solar radiation warms houses when it enters through windows.
Active use of solar energy relies, for example, on solar thermal energy or photovoltaics to generate heat and electricity. It does not work without additional technology. Below we present various solutions to take advantage of the benefits of solar energy in your own home.
Two of the most popular ways to use solar energy
Heating accounts for a good two-thirds of the energy requirement in a household. Including hot water preparation, the share is around 85 percent. But the power consumption is also considerable and there is no foreseeable decrease in the numbers. It is all the more important to generate thermal and electrical energy using solar radiation. There are two ways of doing this: solar thermal energy and photovoltaics.
Understanding The Solar Thermal System
Do you know? Sunlight is attracted to Black clothing. This knowledge is very basic. The photovoltaic systems make use of this basic principle. Because the most critical elements are what’s referred to as the heat transfer medium and the absorber.
The heat transfer medium or thermal medium is the substance used to transfer heat. This is done by fluid or gas that has high thermal conductivity and a low coefficient of friction.
The medium helps homeowners to take advantage of solar energy as needed by using a medium that encourages and transports thermal energy. The helpfulness of this tool helps many homeowners get more out of their roofs with the sun.
The absorber is an important element in the solar thermal system. It’s important for the thermal efficiency of a solar system to have high absorber capacity. The absorber is typically a black body that absorbs sunlight, converting it into heat energy. The absorber is the integrated part of the system. It absorbs solar energy and converts it into heat.
Convert solar energy into electricity with photovoltaics
The main difference to the solar thermal system is that here no collectors absorb the solar radiation, but solar cells. They convert the sun’s energy into electricity. This is possible thanks to the photoelectric effect, which has been known since the 19th century.
He describes how electrons move in semiconductors when they absorb energy from light. In specially designed solar cells, the process produces direct current, which can be picked up via contacts and used in the house. If you want to convert solar energy into electricity yourself, you need a photovoltaic system on the roof.
If the local conditions (alignment, shading) are right, a so-called solar façade is also installed in question. Incidentally, solar energy can also be obtained on a large scale as community energy in order to generate your own regional electricity.