Most governments throughout the world have created new financial incentives for owning and operating a solar electric system.
Photovoltaic systems (PV) allows you to produce electricity—without noise or air pollution—from a clean, renewable resource. A PV system never runs out of fuel, and it won't increase U.S. oil imports. Many PV system components are manufactured right here in the United States.
PV produces power intermittently because it works only when the sun is shining. This is not a problem for PV systems connected to the utility grid, because any additional electricity required is automatically delivered to you by your utility.
The United States will need a much stronger commitment to renewable energy if it is to take advantage of these opportunities. As President Bush has said, America is “addicted to oil,” and dependence on fossil fuels is rising, even in the face of high oil prices and growing concern about global warming. Of particular concern is the well over 100 coal-fired power plants now on the drawing boards of the U.S. electricity industry—most of which lack the latest pollution controls and could still be pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere a half-century from now..
"In global terms, decentralising energy could revolutionise the lives of the billions of people who currently lack access to basic energy services. Decentralised energy is highly flexible, allowing solutions to be tailored to local conditions and be installed much faster than a centralised system. Western governments must rise to the challenge of promoting globally a far more sustainable energy model than they themselves have achieved so far. They have a moral duty (backed up by legitimate self-interest) to incubate and disseminate technologies, skills and knowledge suitable to both international development and tackling global warming."
"The EU intends to achieve a 20% share of renewable energies in its overall energy consumption by 2020. It is also targeting a minimum 10% share of biofuels in overall EU transport petrol and diesel consumption by 2020. Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) is a clean energy that can help the EU to meet its 20% target for renewable energies and its broader energy goals.
Solar power systems use the sun’s rays – solar radiation – as a high-temperature energy source to produce electricity in a thermodynamic cycle. The need for Concentrating Solar arises because solar radiation reaches the Earth’s surface with a density(kW/m2) that is adequate for heating systems but not for an efficient thermodynamic cycle for producing electricity"
"It is daylight rather than direct sunlight that is required by these systems. However, whilst there is easily enough solar energy striking the roof of an average UK property to meet all of its heat and hot water requirements, levels of radiation are not constant throughout the year. Solar systems need to take this into account.
"The basic building block of PV technology is the solar “cell.” Many cells may be wired together to produce a PV “module,” and many modules are linked together to form a PV “array.” PV modules sold commercially range in power output from about 10 watts to 300 watts, and produce a direct current like that from a car’s battery.
PV systems produce power intermittently because they work only when the sun is shining. More electricity is produced on a clear, sunny day with more intense sunlight and with a more direct light angle, as when the sun is perpendicular to the surface of the PV modules."
"Manufactured homes are susceptible to air infiltration because they are usually installed off the ground, the outside walls are sheathed with panels, and exterior building components have been jarred around when the unit was transported.
Another common source of air leakage is kitchen and bathroom ventilation fan vents. These often are provided with covers to seal the opening when the fan is not in use; usually the cover is not sufficient to prevent air leakage. Caulk around the vent (between the vent and the interior paneling) and weatherstrip the cover. If the cover is missing, one can be made of wood paneling and weatherstripping.
"The fundamental properties of inorganic thin films (with the exception of amorphous Si) are only partially understood. There is less accumulated knowledge of how to process thin films compared with the situation for crystalline Si. Fundamental research is needed to improve device quality and module efficiency and to develop a better understanding of the relationship between the deposition processes and parameters, the electrical and optical properties of the deposited materials, and the device properties that result."
"Scientific inquiry and technological design have similarities and differences. Scientists propose explanations for questions about the natural world, and engineers propose solutions relating to human problems, needs, and aspirations. Technological solutions are temporary; technologies exist within nature and so they cannot contravene physical or biological principles; technological solutions have side effects; and technologies cost, carry risks, and provide benefits."