Obtaining

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People have to collect sunlight to harness its energy. These are few of the many ways to collect the sunlight.

  • Solar cells

-Solar cells are the most popular way to obtain the sun's energy.
-Sunlight hits the solar cell, electrons in the cell move around and produce electricity.
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Solar Cell taken from wikipedia

  • Solar Power Tower
    solar_power_tower.jpg
    solar power tower

-Solar power towers consist of mirrors placed in a circle to reflect the sun's rays into the middle of the tower.

  • -The sun's energy heats up oil that creates steam to run a generator.
  • Parabolic Troughs

- Trough focuses the sun's light to one main point by mirrors.

- The fluid creates electricity through the sun's energy.


  • Flat plate collectors (solar collectors)

-Flat plate collectors are passive solar energy.

Flat_plate_collectors.jpg
Flat Plate collectors taken from google images

-A flat plate collector is a black box with a glass panel on top.

-The sunlight goes through the glass panel and heats up the black surfaces.

-The black surfaces heat up a tube full of water that creates electricity.

  • Concentrating collectors

-Concentrating collectors consist of mirrors all facing one point.

-This creates extremely high temperatures.

-The heat is directly used for industrial purposes.

  • Solar furnaces

- Sun's light is focused onto one center point

- Liquid being piped much like flat plate collectors heats up

- This heated water turns into electricity

  • Solar Ponds
    Solar_pond.jpg
    Solar Pond taken from alternative energy. com

- Pond filled with water covered with black absorbtion sheet

- This black sheet focuses the sun's light to the water heating the water up

- As the water heats up this produces electricity for homes and buildings


There are many ways poeple can obtain the suns energy. These are few of the many ways the sun's energy can be harnessed.

Click here to learn more about methods of obtaining solar power

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Location

The sun’s energy hits every place on Earth, but certain places get more sunlight and are better places to collect solar energy. There is typically more direct sunlight near the equator. Some of the best places to collect solar energy in the United States are Arizona, California, Texas, New Mexico, and Nevada. Northern Mexico is also a great place to gather solar energy, as are Ecuador, Argentina, Peru, Chile, and Brazil. Over in Africa, Angola, Botswana, Sudan, Chad, Egypt, Ethiopia, Somalia, Kenya and Niger all collect sunlight and turn it into electricity and heat. But the top 6 countries that collect solar energy are...

1.Germany

2.Spain

3.Italy

4.Japan

5.U.S.A.

6.Czech Republic

The world’s biggest photovoltaic (PV) plant is in Portugal and creates enough energy to power 8,000 homes. In Leipzig, Germany, a large solar farm stands with more than 33,500 solar panels that generate 5 mega-watts of energy every 24 hours. In the Mojave Desert, Solar One and Solar Two stand as the world’s two biggest solar power stations. Solar energy is found all over the world.



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Solar Power World Map drawn by Talia

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