The sun is the only thing that can sustain all life on Earth. The sun’s energy sustains life every day. It gives us heat, light, and health benefits. Without the sun, the Earth wouldn’t be a solid rock with any life forms.
Solar energy is more important than any other item in your daily life, except water and food. As an alternative and renewable energy source, solar energy is growing in popularity. It is important to understand the power of the sun. If you don’t, you may depend on it for your daily energy requirements.
What is Solar Energy?
What exactly is solar energy? It is exactly what it sounds like: solar energy is the sun’s energy. The energy you see is light, and the heat you feel is the sun. Both are constituted by solar radiation.
This solar radiation is different across the globe. Hawaii gets more sunlight than Maine. Even distant places could receive different amounts of solar radiation each year.
Solar energy has many benefits. It is renewable and clean. The majority of American energy comes from nonrenewable sources that emit carbon dioxide. The sun’s energy is still available, and it can be captured. In turning it into electricity, almost zero carbon dioxide emissions are produced.
The sun is also renewable. It shines no matter what human activities may be. While nonrenewable energy resources may eventually run out, the sun will continue to shine for all eternity. The sun will always provide clean energy.
The concept of solar energy is not new. For centuries, people used the sun to perform daily tasks and activities. Although the sun’s energy was not used in the same way today, it was essential for people to survive and live.
Have you ever seen a survival program where someone used the sun to light a fire or took part in science classes where you used a magnifying lens to light a piece of paper on fire with a magnifying lamp? This practice was first observed in the 7th Century B.C. The magnifying glass heats enough to ignite a fire by concentrating the sun’s rays.
Humans have also used the sun’s heat to achieve various purposes. In ancient Rome, bathhouses were very popular. The sun was used to heat the water. The sun’s heat was also used passively to heat homes and provide light. This is still a popular method of heating water.
Humans have used the sun to cook food for thousands of years. Humans can thrive on the Earth thanks to multiple solar energy and sunlight applications.
Solar Energy Now
Solar energy can now be used to power homes and businesses. In just over an hour, the sun would shine enough light on the Earth to supply the entire world with energy for one year. Although this is a huge opportunity, not everyone is ready to switch to solar energy. It would also take time to build solar plants in different parts of the world.
Two main technologies are responsible for the solar energy we know today: photovoltaics and concentrating solar thermal power (CSP). Photovoltaics can be seen in solar panels. The sun’s rays are absorbed by P.V. cells, creating electrical charges that provide electricity. CSP uses mirrors that reflect sunlight onto receivers. This generates heat and electricity for larger companies.
Only 2% comes from solar energy. This is a tiny percentage compared to other forms. But solar energy is growing. This resource is infinite and far more beneficial for the environment than other nonrenewable resources, as activists for the environment try to prove.
You rely on the sun’s energy every day, whether you use it to power your home or gain vitamin D. Although you may not use it to heat your shower or start fires, you still need it for food, as animals and plants depend on it for energy. Your day needs to run smoothly. You wouldn’t exist without the sun’s energy.
The Sun in Our Future
The importance of solar energy in the future will remain the same as it was in the past. The demand for solar energy will increase as more people adopt renewable energy. Humans must make this switch to save the planet and continue to thrive on Earth.