Category Archives: Alternative Energy

Importance of Alternative Energy in this Modern Era

Flexible Photovoltaic Technology: Its features, benefits and Applications

Flexible Photovoltaic Technology is technology of research levels. It was example of one that had been created at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In this solar cells were manufactured by deposition of photovoltaic materials on substrates that are flexible like ordinary paper. There is also usage of chemical vapour deposition technologies. Manufacturing technologies of solar cell on paper had been developed by researchers group from National Science Foundation and Eni-MIT Alliance Solar Frontiers Program.

Features: Photovoltaic organic circuit materials have been deposited in 5 layers on substrates of ordinary paper in vacuum chambers. This is done by conformal coating of conductive electrode polymer with chemical oxidative vapours. Process is called chemical vapour deposition. Solar panels of this kind have capabilities of voltage production which exceeds 50 V. This in turn power appliance normally at lighting conditions. Solar cells are shown also being flexible. Conductive solar cells grids are same as inkjet photo printouts with rectangles patterned. When leads have been attached to substrates electrically, it has to be shown to electrical power appliances. “Printing” costs (as described by MIT) is claimed for being same as photo inkjet printing. The technology makes use of vapour deposition temperatures being less than 120 degrees. This becomes easy for manufacturing on ordinary papers. Panel’s current efficiency is nearly 1%. Researchers hope for improvement in near futures. Testing: Circuits were tested also by deposition of photovoltaic materials on (PET) polyethylene terephthalate substrates. PET sheets were unfolded and folded 1000 times. No over ting performance deterioration had been observed. There are photovoltaic materials common being deposited on deteriorated PET with only 1 fold. Solar cell was passed also by means of laser printing for demonstrating performance continued after exposures to temperatures somewhat high. It still retains procedural characteristics.

Benefits: In solar panels conventionally, panel’s supporting structures like brackets and glass are 2 times more costly as materials of photovoltaic being manufactured on them. Paper in turn costs 1 thousandth of glass approximately. Solar cells use printing process. This is much cheap than solar panels conventionally. Different methods also which involves coating papers along with material includes 1st paper coating with smooth materials for counter acting molecular scale’s paper rough. But in this process, photovoltaic materials are directly coated onto paper untreated.

Applications: In case solar cells achieve in turn sufficient maturity technologically, they are used as window shades and wall papers for electricity production from lighting room. They also can be manufactured on the clothing. This can be used for charging portable devices electronically such as media players and mobile phones. Solar flexible modules are used on roofs curved or on those roofs where there is no sense of installing rack mounting systems.

Disadvantages: For lasting more than 20 years outdoors being having elements exposure, solar cells are finished with front sheets of thermoplastic olefin or UV resistant fluoropolymer instead of glass being used in solar cells conventional. This is less costly comparatively. Solar cells should be sealed such that oxygen and water do not enter and destroy cells by means of oxidative degradation. Photovoltaic solar cell: Solar panels are imagined when one thinks of solar power (polycrystalline and monocrystalline). Flexible photovoltaic technology is composed not of highly silicon refined crystals. But instead it is 1 continuous material. 4 types of (TFPV) thin-film solar photovoltaic being classified by photovoltaic materials are used. TFPV principle is same as crystalline PV. Light strikes material. It excites electrons. Then flow by means of p-n junction permutation, thereby generating electricity’s that is utilized and captured.

There are amorphous silicon (aSi) solar photovoltaic cells: This was developed in seventies. It was made from silicon’s non-crystalline form.

Hydrogen fuel: Is that the Future Fuel for our vehicles?

Hydrogen fuel is that fuel which is zero emissioned. This is the case when hydrogen fuel is burned with the oxygen (water being considered not as emission) or used in cell contained having the capabilities of reverse reactions in case required. It uses often internal engines combustion or electrochemical cells for powering electric and vehicles devices. It is used also in spacecraft’s propulsion. It potentially might be commercialized and mass produced for vehicles passenger and aircraft. Hydrogen lies in 1st period and 1st group in periodic table. This means that it is 1st element on periodic table. This makes hydrogen lightest of all elements. Hydrogen gas is very light. So, it rises in atmosphere. So, it is found rarely in its purest form. In flames of pure hydrogen gases and air burning, oxygen and hydrogen react with one another to form water. This releases energy. In case reaction is brought about in atmospheric air in place of pure oxygen, which is case usually. Then combustion of hydrogen yields small amount of nitrogen oxides together with water vapour.

Energy being released thereby enables hydrogen being acting as fuel. In electrochemical cells, this energy is used with relative high efficiencies. In case this is used for heating, then thermodynamic limits usually on thermal efficiency application. There is too much little free gas of hydrogen. The hydrogen is only practiced as energy carriers like electricity. It is not energy resource. There should be production of hydrogen gas. This production needs more energy which is retrieved from gas as fuels later on. This has been limitation of physical laws of energy conservation. Production of hydrogen thereby induces impacts on environment. Production: Since pure hydrogen gases do not naturally occur on Earth in plentiful quantities. So it takes energy in substantial amounts for its production industrially. Various ways of producing it is steam methane reforming process and electrolysis process. In process of electrolysis, electricity’s run by means of water for separating oxygen and hydrogen atoms. This process uses nuclear, wind, biomass, solar, geothermal, fossil fuels, hydro and different other sources of energy. To obtain hydrogen from this method is studied as viable ways of producing it domestically at low costs. In process of steam methane reforming, there are current leading technologies for production of hydrogen in big quantities. This method thereby extracts hydrogen from methane. This reaction, however, causes side productions of carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide. These are greenhouse gases which contribute to global warming.

Energy: Hydrogen acts as energy carrier once it is manufactured. It is energy store being generated 1st by different means. Energy is delivered to the fuel cells. This generates heat and electricity. It is burned for running combustion engines. In all cases, hydrogen is to be combined with oxygen for forming water. Heat in hydrogen flames are radiant emissions from water molecules newly formed. Water molecules remain in excited states on initial formations. Then they have transitions to ground states. This transition unleashes thermal radiation. 2000 degrees is roughly temperature when air burning is done. Carbon, historically, is most practical energy carrier. More energy is packed in the fossil fuels when compared with purified liquid hydrogen of similar volumes. Atoms of carbon had have storage capabilities classically. This releases more energy even when wit hydrogen it is burned. Burning, however, carbon based fuels releases exhaust contribution to global warming. Reason is that, there are greenhouse effects of carbon gases. Pure hydrogen is very small element. So, little of it escapes inevitably from pipe or container in fewer amounts. Simple ventilation prevents leakage of this kind from reaching 4% volatile hydrogen air mixture.

Introduction to Solar Power Technology

Solar Power is conversion of sunlight to electricity, directly either using (PV) Photovoltaic or indirectly using (CSP) concentrated solar power. Systems of concentrated solar power use mirrors or lenses and tracking systems for focusing large sunlight area to small beams. Photovoltaic converts light to electric current by utilizing photovoltaic effects. Photovoltaic was solely initially used as electricity sources for medium and small sized applications. This is from calculators powered by 1 solar cell to homes remote being powered by rooftop off-grid PV system. As costs of solar electricity falls, numbers of grid connected PV solar systems have grown to millions. Utility scaled solar power stations with megawatts in hundreds are built. PV solar is rapidly becoming low carbon, inexpensive technology for harnessing renewable energies from Sun.

Emerging technologies after photovoltaic cell (PV cell) or solar cell: Concentrator photovoltaic (CPV): This system employs sunlight being concentrated onto surfaces of photovoltaic for purposes of electrical power productions. Opposite to conventional PV systems, it uses curved mirrors and lenses for focusing sunlight to small, but too much highly efficient multi- junction solar cell. Solar concentrators of many varieties are used. These are mounted often on solar trackers for keeping focal points on cells with movement of sun across sky. Luminescent Solar Concentrators plus PV solar cell is regarded as CPV system. CPV are useful because they improve PV solar panels efficiency drastically. Floatovoltaics: This is emerging form of the PV systems which floats on surfaces of tailing ponds, irrigation canals, quarry lakes and water reservoirs. This system in turn reduces requirement of land area valued and drinking water saved. This water could be lost by means of evaporation. Then there is showing of high efficiencies of solar energy conversions. This is as panels have been kept at cool temperatures than their presence on land. Hybrid Systems: This combines CSP and CPV with each other or with different forms of generations like biogas, diesel and wind. Generation’s combined form enables systems modulating power outputs as demanding functions or reducing at least fluctuating solar power natures and consumption of fuel non-renewable. These hybrid systems are often found on islands.

CSP/CPV system: Novel solar CSP/CPV hybrid system is proposed. It combines concentrator photovoltaic with non-PV technologies of concentrated solar powers. This is called also concentrated solar thermal. ISCC system: There is combination of CSP with gas turbines. In this, 25 megawatt CSP parabolic trough arrays supplement much large 130 megawatt combined turbine cycle gas plant. PVT system: This is Hybrid PV/T system. It is called Photovoltaic Thermal Hybrid Solar Collectors. This converts solar radiations to electrical and thermal energy. This system combines Solar PV modules with solar thermal collectors in complementary ways. CPVT system: It is Concentrated Photovoltaic Thermal Hybrid system being same as PVT system. This utilizes concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) in place of conventional PV technologies. This combines it with solar thermal collectors. PV diesel system: This combines PV system with diesel generator. Combination with different renewables has been possible that includes wind turbines. PV-thermoelectric system: Thermovoltaic, thermoelectric devices convert temperature differences in between dissimilar materials to electric currents. Solar cells use high frequency radiation parts only. Low frequency heat energy is wasted. Plenty of patents regarding use of the thermoelectric devices in solar cell’s tandem have been filed. Idea is increasing efficiencies of combined thermoelectric/solar system for converting solar radiations to useful electricity.

Parabolic trough in turn consists of linear parabolic reflectors which has concentration of light to receivers being positioned through focal line of reflector. Receiver is tube being positioned just right above middle of parabolic mirrors. This is filled with working fluids.

Passive and Active Sun Trackers

Sun trackers maximize solar panel system’s efficiency by 25% to 40% whilst tracking by motion of sun. Particularly, sun moves across sky from east to west. For making sun’s panel system efficient too much, system possibly should be perpendicularly positioned to rays of sun. In comparison to fixed PV sun’s systems, a solar tracking system increases array’s energy output by 30% to 55%. Along with tracking seasonally there is adjustment of sun’s panels on north south axis. Output of energy has been further increased. These sun trackers operate by minimization of incidence of light coming in and PV panel by itself. Totally 85% of nearly all installations commercially use sun trackers to little extents. Sun tracker systems make more than 1 MW of solar energies. Sun trackers use usually mounted ground solar arrays which allow walking underneath. It allows plants shades also for thriving under low intensified sunlight.

There are 2 types of sun trackers: One is passive. Other is active. A passive sun tracker essentially is too much slow vapour engine. These apparatus contains 2 reservoirs that contain Freon 12. This is connected by means of hydraulic cylinder or transfer hose. All containers of Freon 12 are shaded equal amounts. It allows setup containing more in 1 reservoir than different others whilst sun moves throughout sky from east to west. Tank with great sun exposures conducts collection of more heat thereby boiling more of Freon 12. There are differences in between low pressure and high pressure that retracts or extends pistons in hydraulic cylinders. When movement of piston is there, either it pulls or pushes solar panels with sun’s alignment. Freon 12 is very crucial and essential working fluid as because it has lowered boiling temperatures. It possesses head pressure enough for operating systems. But this head pressure is not sufficient enough for bursting system. It is non-explosive also and non-toxic relatively. It is available also in any place of world from any refrigeration shop. Passive trackers are operated thermally. They do not operate nicely in cold temperature areas or windy areas. Hydraulic dampers have been used for regulating sun tracker’s movements.

Active trackers have been mechanized for necessities and requirement of regular maintenance. Benefits and advantages of utilizing active trackers are that it has had been precise extremely in sun measurement. Trackers dual axes, track east and west movement of sun and changes seasonally along axis of south and north. Problem encountered by people whilst running active trackers are that they become unreliable. Reason is that maintenance regularly is needed for running and operating them. There has been presence of moving parts. These moving parts anytime can be operated electronically. There has been little performance issues also. Sun trackers are those devices which help in maximizing solar panel’s output. Sun’s movement from low east to low west all round the day is tracked by sun tracker. Depending on makeup, sun trackers are classified as passive trackers and active trackers. Passive trackers do not utilize electricity for operation. Freon 12 is utilized as low boiling point working fluid. This transfers weight within modules. This then rotates solar panels. Vacuum pumps are connected to Schroeder valves. This charges it by half-filled with Freon. 2 long transfer hoses of refrigerant have been used for connecting reservoirs of Freon to cylinders acting doubly. Hydraulic gears are inexpensively purchased. Special heed needs being paid to (CG) centre of gravity of system of sun tracker. High centre of gravity causes system swinging forth and back erratically. But low centre of gravity causes slow movement of system. Balancing of 2 Freon tanks must be done for proper operation.

Importance of Alternative Energy in this Modern Era

There are several factors that control the life on earth. Energy is an invisible but an inevitable factor that is essential for the growth of life. Energy is present in each and every living thing. Even an inanimate object can be moved in to motion by external application of energy. The source of energy is always an interesting and debatable topic for scientists who couldn’t give a satisfactory definition for this phenomenon. Several theories have been put forward about energy yet a conclusive statement is not propagated. One thing that is agreed by every one is it is a feeling that is beyond explanation. Energy is present every where in nature in air, water, fire even in micro organisms. In the contemporary period scientists agrees to a common factor of energy that there are two types of energy – negative and positive energy. Positive energy is required for several activities especially a nation’s progress in several field is based upon the exact utilization of energy. The energy consumption results in power that is used for various purposes. The energy from the natural resources is used for electric supply especially from the water resources. Due to the exploitation of natural resources the energy and power consumption is on the verge of threat. If the lack of such energy sources ceases other alternatives for the production of power need to be found to recuperate the energy crisis. The concept of alternative energy thus evolved that can be used as renewable energy.

Alternative energy has different definitions. The prominent definition of alternative energy is that any energy termed as alternative energy may be from a renewable source

And shouldn’t harm the environment and should not exploit the natural resources. Another aspect of alternative energy is it has to be derived from non conventional or non traditional resources. The energy created from fossil fuels produces considerable amount of carbon di oxide that triggers the pollution level and such energy produced cannot be considered as alternative energy. Instead of fossil fuels alternative fuel can be derived form alcohol. Any fuel or energy produced from unconventional sources like wind, wave, biomass, tidal, coal and solar energy is the real specimen of alternative energy. Thus an alternative energy can be identified from its renewable nature and non conventional source. In Europe from the medieval period onwards coal was considered as an alternative fuel and energy. Before the invention of coal as alternative energy wood was the natural source of energy. When due to deforestation wood supply was ceased the potential of coal as an alternative energy was discovered. Today the coal consumption for generation of power is higher than any other alternative form of energy. Another form of alternative energy is derived from petroleum instead of expensive whale oil that made the extinction of rare species of whales. Coal Gasification is another alternative for petroleum energy. Geo thermal energy is another energy form derived from hot water steam. Bio fuels and solar energy are the most commonly used form of alternative energy even in households. Hydrogen fuel is used as energy in space ships and certain type of cars. There is also a wide range of bio fuels including algae fuel, ethanol bio fuel, and food crop based bio fuels and feed stock oil.

In the contemporary period where natural resources are facing depletion to a higher level it is highly necessary to find alternative sources of energies. The alternative energy is more cost effective, economical and feasible. Any alternative energy that is eco friendly and renewable can be promoted for the energy consumption sector that faces acute energy crisis.


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