Future of Solar Energy Brighter Than Sun: Rapid Innovations Pave the Way.
- Jan 27, 2020 2:43 pm GMT
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Future of Solar Energy Brighter Than Sun: Rapid Innovations Pave the Way. By: Swamini Kulkarni, January 24th, 2020
We live in the age of automation and artificial intelligence. We need smartphones with long-lasting battery backup. We demand computers with higher computing power. In short, we require more and more energy. And when it comes to energy, we often turn to the most sustainable power alternative: solar energy.
Its abundance is not the only aspect that makes it the best candidate to fulfill increasing energy demand. Over the last few years, it has overcome several hurdles that prevented it from last-scale adoption. The global value of the market is increasing at a colossal compound annual growth rate of 20.5%.
The solar energy market has come a long way. In 2018, the market accounted for $52.5 billion, according to research firm Allied Market Research. Now, Allied Market Research predicts that the global solar energy market will reach $223.3 billion by 2026.
The surge in rooftop installation and rapid adoption in the architectural field are the prime drivers of the increasing demand for solar cells. Moreover, recent technological marvels have boosted the adoption of solar panels to generate electricity. For instance, researchers have developed a novel design that could squeeze more energy from solar panels. Additionally, the prices of solar panels have decreased significantly over the past couple of years. Moreover, researchers at the University of Houston recently published a paper unveiling a hybrid device that can both capture and store solar energy.
Moreover, squeezing maximum efficiency out of a regular solar panel is another challenge. Currently, the silicon-based solar panel offers only 33% efficiency, which means most of the solar radiation is not used to generate electricity.
- The efficiency figures given are grossly misused – it is the cell’s efficiency, not the modules….
- The actual availability of solar insolation / irradiation is limited by the local weather aka “Climate”.
- Therefore we have here an inherent barrier - existing in something as a permanent, essential, or characteristic attribute.
- The cascading impact of solar (and wind for this matter) on base-load steam plants is being foolishly ignored.
- The U of Houston is my alma mater...