Solar Advancements: More Ways to Tap into the Sun’s Power

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There are numerous renewable energy resources that are available on this planet. Just because they are available, however, does not mean that people are tapping into them and using them to their advantage. Many people, in fact, are continuing their dependency on oil and letting energy resources like the sun, waves, wind and such, go by. Now, while I’ve covered some of the many uses and ways to capture the wind for wind energy, the benefits of tidal power, and how solar progress has brought us to where we are today, I wanted to do another update on some of the latest solar advancements that are/will allow us to further tap into the sun’s power.

First are the peel-and-stick solar cells that can be placed nearly anywhere. Rather than having to call someone in to install solar panels on your roof, or taking up open land in the desert in order to tap into sun’s power, these solar cells have the potential for offering a broad range use. They could be put on houses, cars, windows, buildings and more. Can you imagine having solar panels on the top of some of the largest buildings and cities around the world? It is a great, and simple, way to tap into the sun’s power by using existing resources and locations. Now that’s smart in my book.

Could solar real estate investment trusts be the next thing in solar? Real estate investment trusts (REITs) are one of the ways to invest in various real estate properties and developments. Since REITs are covered under federal income tax laws and legally established REITs can avoid paying corporate income taxes, providing they meet certain federal requirements, could this be a viable way to grow the solar industry?

Here’s one I really like; the solar-powered light bulb. When many people think of light bulbs, they also know that light bulbs traditionally get their power from wall outlets. What about places that have no access to electrical power? Or places that do not have the money to keep the power on? What about in emergencies? That is where the solar-powered light bulb comes in. There are many different options and ways this can be done, of course. Simply scroll through some of these solar-powered bulbs to brighten off-grid homes.

Scientists are also continuing to come up with new ways to take the efficiency of solar to a whole new level. According to an article from PhysOrg, black silicon has the ability to dramatically increase the light absorption, and decrease the surface reflectance, of solar panels. I look forward to seeing continued advancements to make solar panels as efficient as possible. We might as well use all the sun energy we can get.

The fact that rising solar energy output is driving German and French power prices to record lows just goes to show that it is possible to tap into the power of the sun on a broad scale and eventually wean ourselves off a dependency to oil, and over to a reliance on renewable energies. Although there are individual homes, buildings, companies, towns and even islands that are now running solely on solar power, or a mixture of renewable energies, more and more countries are striving to be self-sufficient on the energy front. Whether it is 10 years, 20 years, 30 years from now or less, many people consider solar, wind and other renewable energies to be our future.

One final solar advancement, of sorts, is that solar beats biofuels when it comes to powering vehicles. In fact, solar has been shown to be up to 200 percent more efficient, especially when you factor in the land use required to develop biofuels (like corn ethanol). Instead of taking fields that could be growing corn for food, as long as it is not GMO corn, and instead using them for biofuel is not as smart as simply tapping into the sun’s power. I mean when you’ve got a resource, as powerful as the sun, why not use it. It is not as if our use would drain the sun of its power.

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