Vecchia, A.; et. al. (1981). “Possibilities for the Application of Solar Energy in the European Community Agriculture”. Solar Energy. 26 (6): 479–489. Bibcode:1981SoEn…26..479D. doi:10.1016/0038-092X(81)90158-4.
Take the example of electric cars. A car stores enough electricity to power a house for anywhere from half a day to several days, depending on the size of the battery pack. And it has sophisticated power electronics that can control the timing and vary the rate of charging, which could offer a way to match fluctuating wind power to electricity demand. With small modifications, the cars’ batteries can deliver stored power to a home and to the power grid. There aren’t many electric cars now, but that could easily change in the decades it will take before renewable energy makes up more than 30 or 40 percent of the electricity supply (wind supplies 4 percent now, and solar less than 1 percent).
Another solar generating technology uses photovoltaic cells (PV) to convert sunlight directly into electricity. These are more commonly called ‘solar panels.’ PV cells are made of semiconductors, such as crystalline silicon or various thin-film materials. Photovoltaics can provide tiny amounts of power for watches, large amounts for the electric grid, and everything in between.
My reporting as MIT Technology Review’s senior editor for materials has taken me, among other places, to the oil-rich deserts of the Middle East and to China, where mountains are being carved away to build the looming cities.… More
“A group of environmentalists wants Michigan’s utility companies to use 30 percent renewable energy by 2030. The wind and solar advocates have started a campaign to get their proposal on the 2018 statewide ballot. ”
America needs energy that is secure, reliable, improves public health, protects the environment, addresses climate change, creates jobs, and provides technological leadership. America needs renewable energy. If renewable energy is to be developed to its full potential, America will need coordinated, sustained federal and state policies that expand renewable energy markets; promote and deploy new technology; and provide appropriate opportunities to encourage renewable energy use in all critical energy market sectors: wholesale and distributed electricity generation, thermal energy applications, and transportation.
Other renewable energy technologies are still under development, and include cellulosic ethanol, hot-dry-rock geothermal power, and marine energy. These technologies are not yet widely demonstrated or have limited commercialization. Many are on the horizon and may have potential comparable to other renewable energy technologies, but still depend on attracting sufficient attention and research, development and demonstration (RD&D) funding.
Feb. 1, 2016 — An expert argues that investment in renewable electricity now outstrips that in fossil fuels, and that increasing numbers of policies to improve the efficiency of energy use and to make energy … read more
“These are not just solar enthusiasts anymore,” says Tom Kimbis, SEIA’s vice president of executive affairs. “The vast majority of residential installations — by a long shot — are done because solar is affordable and it’s saving money.”
US wind energy capacity tripled from 2008 to 2016 and supplied over 5% of total US electricity generation in 2016. Wind and solar accounted for two-thirds of new energy installations in the US in 2015. United States wind power installed capacity exceeds 81 GW as of 2017. This capacity is exceeded only by China. The 1,320MW Alta Wind Energy Center is the largest wind farm in the world. Shepherds Flat Wind Farm in Oregon is the second largest wind farm in the world, completed in 2012, with the nameplate capacity of 845 MW.
Fly over the Carrizo Plain in California’s Central Valley near San Luis Obispo and you’ll see that what was once barren land is now a sprawling solar farm, with panels covering more than seven square miles — one of the world’s largest clean-energy projects. When the sun shines over the Topaz Solar Farm, the shimmering panels produce enough electricity to power all of the residential homes in a city the size of Long Beach, population 475,000.
In addition, land availability has a large effect on the available solar energy because solar panels can only be set up on land that is otherwise unused and suitable for solar panels. Roofs have been found to be a suitable place for solar cells, as many people have discovered that they can collect energy directly from their homes this way. Other areas that are suitable for solar cells are lands that are not being used for businesses where solar plants can be established.
A wind farm is a group of wind turbines in the same location used to produce electric power. A large wind farm may consist of several hundred individual wind turbines, and cover an extended area of hundreds of square miles, but the land between the turbines may be used for agricultural or other purposes. A wind farm may also be located offshore.
Other forms of energy. Energy from tides, the oceans and hot hydrogen fusion are other forms that can be used to generate electricity. Each of these is discussed in some detail with the final result being that each suffers from one or another significant drawback and cannot be relied upon at this time to solve the upcoming energy crunch.
As the sun rises, you are paying for solar energy—typically at a lower rate—instead of energy from your utility company. For the energy you are not producing yourself, you pay the utility company the regular rate.
The Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) is an organization dedicated to research, publication, consulting, and lecturing in the general field of sustainability, with a special focus on profitable innovations for energy and resource efficiency. RMI is headquartered in Snowmass, Colorado, and also maintains offices in Boulder, Colorado. RMI is the publisher of the book Winning the Oil Endgame.
The supply of secure, clean, sustainable energy is arguably the most important scientific and technical challenge facing humanity in the 21st century. Energy security, national security, environmental security, and economic security can likely be met only through addressing the energy problem within the next 10–20 yr. Meeting global energy demand in a sustainable fashion will require not only increased energy efficiency and new methods of using existing carbon-based fuels but also a daunting amount of new carbon-neutral energy. The various factors that conspire to support the above far-reaching conclusions and the basic science needed for the development of a large-scale cost-effective carbon-neutral energy system are the focus of this paper.
It all started in Vermont in 1997. Our passion for protecting the environment led us to our mission: to use the power of consumer choice to change the way power is made. Today, as the longest-serving renewable energy retailer, we remain committed to sustainability every step of the way. By offering only products with an environmental benefit and operating with a zero-carbon footprint, we’re living our promise to the planet, inside and out.
The next largest share of renewable power was provided by wind power at 5.55% of total power production, amounting to 226.5 terawatt-hours during 2016. By January 2017, the United States nameplate generating capacity for wind power was 82,183 megawatts (MW). Texas remained firmly established as the leader in wind power deployment, followed by Iowa and Oklahoma as of year end 2016.
We acknowledge sustained support from the U.S. Department of Energy (Office of Basic Energy Sciences) and the National Science Foundation (and in particular, Chemical Bonding Center CP-CP0533150) for basic research in renewable energy and for facilitating our ongoing perspective on global energy options.
Sealed Batteries Sealed batteries are also lead-acid batteries, but they are sealed and do not lose electrolyte (and therefore do not need to be maintained) like flooded batteries. Examples of sealed batteries included Absorbed Glass Mat (AGM) or Gel Cell batteries. While sealed batteries are more expensive and require more careful charging than wet cells, they take no maintenance and store very well.
Jump up ^ “Global Market Outlook for Photovoltaics 2014-2018” (PDF). epia.org. EPIA – European Photovoltaic Industry Association. Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 June 2014. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
Availability factor Automatic Generation Control Backfeeding Base load Black start Capacity factor Demand factor Droop speed control Economic dispatch Demand management EROEI Fault Home energy storage Grid storage Intermittency Load factor Load following Nameplate capacity Peak demand Power quality Power-flow study Repowering Utility frequency Variability
At the end of 2014, worldwide PV capacity reached at least 177,000 megawatts. Photovoltaics grew fastest in China, followed by Japan and the United States, while Germany remains the world’s largest overall producer of photovoltaic power, contributing about 7.0 percent to the overall electricity generation. Italy meets 7.9 percent of its electricity demands with photovoltaic power—the highest share worldwide. For 2015, global cumulative capacity is forecasted to increase by more than 50 gigawatts (GW). By 2018, worldwide capacity is projected to reach as much as 430 gigawatts. This corresponds to a tripling within five years. Solar power is forecasted to become the world’s largest source of electricity by 2050, with solar photovoltaics and concentrated solar power contributing 16% and 11%, respectively. This requires an increase of installed PV capacity to 4,600 GW, of which more than half is expected to be deployed in China and India.
The energy payback time (EPBT) of a power generating system is the time required to generate as much energy as is consumed during production and lifetime operation of the system. Due to improving production technologies the payback time has been decreasing constantly since the introduction of PV systems in the energy market. In 2000 the energy payback time of PV systems was estimated as 8 to 11 years and in 2006 this was estimated to be 1.5 to 3.5 years for crystalline silicon silicon PV systems and 1–1.5 years for thin film technologies (S. Europe). These figures fell to 0.75–3.5 years in 2013, with an average of about 2 years for crystalline silicon PV and CIS systems.
WindyNation 100 Watt Polycrystalline Solar Panel. Perfect for 12 volt battery charging or wire multiple panels in series for 24 or solar power volt battery charging. 25 year power warranty: 95% power/5 years, 90% power/10 years, 80% power/25 years.
In 2007, General Electric’s Chief Engineer predicted grid parity without subsidies in sunny parts of the United States by around 2015; other companies predicted an earlier date: the cost of solar power will be below grid parity for more than half of residential customers and 10% of commercial customers in the OECD, as long as grid electricity prices do not decrease through 2010.
Solar thermal power stations have been successfully operating in California commercially since the late 1980s, including the largest solar power plant of any kind, the 350 MW Solar Energy Generating Systems. Nevada Solar One is another 64MW plant which has recently opened. Other parabolic trough power plants being proposed are two 50MW plants in Spain, and a 100MW plant in Israel.
Many sources indicate there are ample fossil energy reserves, in one form or another, to supply this energy at some reasonable cost. The World Energy Assessment Report estimates of the total reserves (i.e., 90% confidence that the reserves exist) and of the global resource base (5), including both conventional and unconventional sources, provide a benchmark for evaluating the total available global fossil energy base. Based on 1998 consumption rates, 40–80 yr of proven conventional and unconventional oil reserves exist globally, and 50–150 yr of oil are available if the estimated resource base is included. Sixty to 160 yr of reserves of natural gas are present, and between 207 and 590 yr of gas resources, not including the natural gas potentially available as methane clathrates in the continental shelves, are in the estimated resource base. Similarly, a 1,000- to 2000-yr supply of coal, shales, and tar sands is in the estimated resource base. Hence the estimated fossil energy resources could support a 25- to 30-TW energy consumption rate globally for at least several centuries.
Liquid-based systems heat water or an antifreeze solution in a “hydronic” collector, whereas air-based systems heat air in an “air collector.” Both air and liquid systems can supplement forced air systems.
Smart grid refers to a class of technology people are using to bring utility electricity delivery systems into the 21st century, using computer-based remote control and automation. These systems are made possible by two-way communication technology and computer processing that has been used for decades in other industries. They are beginning to be used on electricity networks, from the power plants and wind farms all the way to the consumers of electricity in homes and businesses. They offer many benefits to utilities and consumers—mostly seen in big improvements in energy efficiency on the electricity grid and in the energy users’ homes and offices.