What are the technologies for obtaining solar energy

What are the technologies for obtaining solar energy

Solar power generation systems are just one of many technologies currently used to obtain solar energy. Do you know there are other major technologies? We will introduce to you below. Although they all use solar energy, there are big differences in operation, design, and installation of each technology.

Solar power generation system
Solar power generation system is used to obtain solar energy, also known as photovoltaic (Photovoltaie, abbreviated as PV) system. The word “Photovoltaic” comes from the Latin words photo (light) and voltaic (energy). Photovoltaic devices capture the energy in sunlight and convert it into electricity, which means they use sunlight energy.

Solar thermal power generation
Solar thermal power generation uses solar heat in many different ways instead of using sunlight. Since solar thermal power generation is cost-competitive with conventional power generation in certain applications, both small and large applications have become very prominent.

Solar hot water
Dayang Energy is one of the most commonly used forms of solar energy. Solar energy uses “solar collectors” to heat water. Solar collectors are placed on the roof and may also include roof water tanks for storing hot water. Do not mix them with photovoltaic modules that are used to generate electricity.
There are two main types of solar hot water collectors. The most common is the flat type, a large dark flat plate collects heat. And water flows through the pipe below. The heat is transferred from the dark plate to the water, and when it is hot enough, it is heated into steam in the water tank.
Recently, vacuum tubes (another type of heat collector) have become popular. This type of heat collector uses cylindrical pipes through which water flows. The pipeline has an inner tube and an outer tube, and a vacuum is drawn between the two to ensure heat insulation and reduce heat loss from the water to the surroundings.

Solar water heating system
Solar water heating system

Concentrated solar power
Concentated Solar Power (CSP) is a form of large-scale solar thermal power generation. However, CSP is a high-efficiency power plant that generates electricity and feeds it into the grid, not to produce hot water. The CSP uses a large mirror to focus the sun’s rays to a central point (usually a tube), gathers heat to heat water, and produces steam to drive a steam engine to generate electricity. CSP has good economic efficiency when applied on a large scale, and is usually used as a power plant to feed power to the grid. This technology has been used in the Mojave Desert in California, USA for many years, and now it appears in many regions such as Spain.
The international interest in CSP technology is very strong, and there is a new trend of replacing water with molten salt as a heat storage medium. One of the main problems with solar power generation is that electricity storage is very expensive. However, molten salt can store the energy of the CSP system for several hours, so it can generate electricity even at night when the sun is no longer providing energy. This form of energy storage is significantly cheaper than batteries that are commonly used to store photovoltaic energy.

Solar water heating system with vacuum tube collector
Solar water heating system with vacuum tube collector

Passive solar design
Passive solar design refers to the design of buildings for the purpose of using solar energy as much as possible. Passive solar designs are different around the world, but the basic idea is to isolate sunlight outside in summer and draw sunlight indoors in winter, thereby reducing the need for artificial cooling and/or heating.
●Deciduous trees and grape vines are very useful. If they are planted in a place directly exposed to the sun, they can shade this area in summer, but in winter, when the leaves are gone, the sun can irradiate and heat this area.
●The design of eaves and awnings can also cover the windows in summer (the sun in the sky is higher), and in winter (the sun in the sky is lower) to make the sun heat the building. The eaves should also be painted lightly to reflect sunlight in summer. If painted dark, these materials will absorb light and be heated.
●Open the windows in summer to let the cool breeze into the room; in winter, they should close the windows to prevent
The role of adiabatic air. The windows should be placed according to the local wind direction, that is, if the northeast wind usually blows in the summer, the windows should be placed on the north and east sides of the building to get a breeze.
●No matter how the outdoor temperature fluctuates, to keep the building at an appropriate temperature, heat quality and insulation materials are very important. The reason is simple. It is the same as closing the curtains in winter to prevent heat from escaping through the windows.

Ways to obtain energy from a variety of passive solar technologies
CSP system
Ways to obtain energy from a variety of passive solar technologies
Ways to obtain energy from a variety of passive solar technologies

All these technologies can reduce the need for artificial heating or cooling, and reduce the energy consumption of buildings. They are used as a supplement to the solar power generation system to form energy-efficient buildings, use less electricity and output more solar power to the grid