Just like the tree which has many uses, the sun’s power, also known as solar energy can be used in various ways. The sun is a natural source of light during the daytime; however, people use artificial lighting powered by electricity at night to live comfortably. The availability of light at night does not only allow people to do their activities but it also keeps them safe from any potential threat of burglary or home intrusion. However, the sun’s energy needs to be harvested and converted into solar electricity to power electrical equipment and lighting fixtures. This is called the off-grid energy which is cheap and environment-friendly. In order to understand this technology we are going to look into the processes and factors involved in it.
In order to use solar energy as electricity, it must undergo the Photovoltaic system. Photovoltaic technology or PV uses an individual or sets of solar panels. The solar panels then convert the solar energy into electricity. A PV cell is made of more than two thin layers of semi-conducting materials. The common material used is silicon and when it is exposed to sunlight will generate electrical charges. When the electrical charges are produced, metal conductors draw these away as direct current or DC. Note that there is a need for several cells for the electrical yield by a single cell is just small. The whole set of multiple cells are connected and is cased behind a glass to form a module. A number of modules can be connected to get the desired amount of electricity.
One of the most common uses of solar electricity is the off-grid lighting technology for it is inexpensive and is environment-friendly. It is a small investment that home owners that can benefit the whole household. The off-grid lighting technology allows homes to have three light qualities. These are ambient, general and task lighting. All these three are made possible by the cheap solar electricity.
Ambient lighting provides a minimum amount of illumination for people to move around living spaces and see each other. This type of illumination is also known as the dim light. This is usually the type of lighting candles, wick lamps and hurricane lamps give off. In households, this is useful in sitting rooms as well as children’s quarters. This helps children who are usually afraid of the dark; they get to sleep and rest better.
General lighting offers enough illumination for seeing objects and for reading. With the right amount of illumination that general lighting offers, the household members will be able to do their chores. Children will be able to study and do their homework. Parents on the other hand can do the cooking and washing of dishes. This type of illumination is the same kind that pressure lamps, LPG lamps and incandescent bulbs provide. This offers security to most households because studies show that when there is enough light inside and outside the house at night, burglars will not risk breaking in for the last thing they would want is a confrontation between them and the home owner.
The third type of illumination that off-grid lighting can provide is the task type. The task lighting provides bright illumination for specialty for viewing details closely. This is important for home owners who do detailed jobs such as engineers and architects. The task lighting allows architects to make and review floor plans and blueprints carefully, not missing important details. This type of lighting is also given off by Halogen, fluorescent, cluster led.
The most famous types of lighting that uses the solar electricity are LEDs and CFLs. LEDs or light emitting diodes when powered by solar electricity will not only deliver cheap lighting but will also provide bright lights that can give off general or task lighting. The CFLs or compact fluorescent lamps also offer both general and task lighting. These sets of combinations are really affordable that low-income people can take advantage of them. People will not also think of high electric bills to pay since solar electricity is used.
Another advantage that off-grid lighting has in relation to solar electricity is that it seemingly comes with a stand-alone generator without the batteries. The electric charges produced are economically viable for hours. Having the PV installed in homes will also offer another reason for practicality. The whole PV does not come with moving parts, thus there is no need for meticulous maintenance. The whole idea of maintenance is related to expenses. Since the PV system does not require maintenance, then there will be less expenses on the home owner’s part.
The green energy, solar power is truly useful in many ways. It provides many functions to homes such as heating, and this time lighting. Unlike regular electric-powered lights, the off-grid lighting technology derived from solar energy does not emit harmful greenhouse gasses and is inexpensive as a whole. This is a benefit of sustainability that green energy offers. Hearing the off-grid lighting technology may seem intimidating but in actuality it is beneficial for many homes.