meaning that whilst solar power is not available at all times. and the 600 MW Rancho Cielo Solar Farm. HISTORY OF SOLAR CELLS The term "photovoltaic" comes from the Greek meaning "light". from the name of the Italian physicist Volta. such as the 100 MW Fort Peck Solar Farm. but recently multi-megawatt photovoltaic plants have been built. meaning electric. like the 354 MW SEGS. Some technologies. or indirect as with concentrating solar power (CSP). the volt. Orbital solar power collection (as in solar power satellites) avoids this intermittent issue. These store spare solar energy in the form of heat which can be made available overnight or during periods that solar power is not available to produce electricity. Terrestrial solar power is a predictably intermittent energy source. but requires satellite launching and beaming of the collected power to receiving antennas on Earth. The largest solar power plants. Solar power provided 0. is named. after whom a unit of electro-motive force. and "voltaic". the 46 MW Moura photovoltaic power station in Portugal and the 40 MW Waldpolenz Solar Park in Germany appear to be characteristic of the trend toward larger photovoltaic power stations. we can predict with a very good degree of accuracy when it will and will not be available. Larger ones are proposed. are concentrating solar thermal plants. Completed in 2008. such as molten salts. The term "photo-voltaic" has been in use in English since 1849. . The increased intensity of sunlight above the atmosphere also increases generation efficiency. where the sun's energy is focused to boil water which is then used to provide power.SOLAR POWER Solar power is the generation of electricity from sunlight.02% of the total world energy consumption in 2008. the 550 MW Topaz Solar Farm. This can be direct as with photovoltaic’s (PV). such as solar thermal concentrators have an element of thermal storage.

Albert Einstein explained the photoelectric effect in 1905 for which he received the Nobel prize in Physics in 1921. although this has been decreasing due to the learning curve. which normally focuses the sun's energy to boil water which is then used to provide power. a combined power plant has been demonstrated. Calvin Souther Fuller and Gerald Pearson in 1954 using a diffused silicon p-n junction. solar power generation is combined either with storage or other energy sources to provide continuous power. biomass. Solar power supplied 0. The fact with photovoltaics is that it is difficult to create a commercially viable system because of the overall cost of the system required to generate a useful amount of power. In 2008. years. Developing countries have started to build solar power plants. In 1888 Russian physicist Aleksandr Stoletov built the first photoelectric cell (based on the outer photoelectric effect discovered by Heinrich Hertz earlier in 1887).The photovoltaic effect was first recognized in 1839 by French physicist A. The photovoltaic cell was developed in 1954 at Bell Laboratories. in Germany. Solar power plants can face high installation costs. In the past four decades. by Charles Fritts. APPLICATIONS Solar power is the conversion of sunlight to electricity. The highly efficient solar cell was first developed by Daryl Chapin. and solar power generation. using a mix of wind. If it continued at that rate.02% of the world's total energy supply. replacing other sources of energy generation. or fewer. THEORY . resulting in 100% renewable energy. each has its advantages and disadvantages. However. The device was only around 1% efficient. which was discovered while working on the series of advances that would lead to the transistor. On a larger scale. and technologies such as the Stirling engine dishes which use a Stirling cycle engine to power a generator. Polycrystalline and Amorphous. Russell Ohl patented the modern junction semiconductor solar cell in 1946. hydro-. from the calculator powered by a single solar cell to off-grid homes powered by a photovoltaic array. Sunlight can be converted directly into electricity using photovoltaics (PV). Becquerel. The three types of photovoltaic panels are Monocrystalline. remarkable progress has been made. with Megawatt solar power generating plants having now been built. or indirectly with concentrating solar power (CSP). solar power would become the dominant energy source within a few decades. it was not until 1883 that the first solar cell was built. net metering makes this transparent to the consumer. E. Photovoltaics were initially used to power small and medium-sized applications. who coated the semiconductor selenium with an extremely thin layer of gold to form the junctions. Since solar radiation is intermittent. although for small distributed producer/consumers. Use has been doubling every two.

Due to the special composition of solar cells. A wide range of concentrating technologies exists. A legend claims that Archimedes used polished shields to concentrate sunlight on the invading Roman fleet and repel them from Syracuse. 3. Augustin Mouchot used a parabolic trough to produce steam for the first solar steam engine in 1866. such as silicon.The solar cell works in three steps: 1. WORKING OF SOLAR POWER CONCENTRATING SOLAR POWER Solar troughs are the most widely deployed. 2. Photons in sunlight hit the solar panel and are absorbed by semiconducting materials. In all of these systems a working fluid is . Various techniques are used to track the Sun and focus light. The concentrated heat is then used as a heat source for a conventional power plant. allowing them to flow through the material to produce electricity. the electrons are only allowed to move in a single direction. the most developed are the parabolic trough. the concentrating linear fresnel reflector. the Stirling dish and the solar power tower. Electrons (negatively charged) are knocked loose from their atoms. An array of solar cells converts solar energy into a usable amount of direct current (DC) electricity. Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) systems use lenses or mirrors and tracking systems to focus a large area of sunlight into a small beam.

Spain are representatives of this technology.heated by the concentrated sunlight. Paraboloidal coordinates ("parabolic") dish systems give the highest efficiency among CSP technologies. Following the work of Russell Ohl in the 1940s. or dish engine system. PHOTOVOLTAICS A solar cell. The Solar Two in Barstow. The SEGS plants in California and Acciona's Nevada Solar One near Boulder City. and that more reflectors can be placed in the same amount of space. This has the advantage that flat mirrors can be used which are much cheaper than parabolic mirrors. A Stirling solar dish. uses a technique inspired by Archimedes' principle to rotate the mirrors. Power towers are more cost effective. This is based on the discovery by AlexandreEdmond Becquerel who noticed that some materials release electrons when hit with rays of photons from light. The receiver follows the line focus created by the dish (as opposed to a point focus with tracking parabolic mirrors). A parabolic trough consists of a linear parabolic reflector that concentrates light onto a receiver positioned along the reflector's focal line. The advantages of Stirling solar over photovoltaic cells are higher efficiency of converting sunlight into electricity and longer lifetime. A solar power tower uses an array of tracking reflectors (heliostats) to concentrate light on a central receiver atop a tower. or photovoltaic cell (PV). both Ernst Werner von Siemens and James Clerk Maxwell recognized the importance of this discovery. researchers Gerald Pearson. which produces an electrical current. developed by Melvin Prueitt. Concentrating linear fresnel reflectors can be used in either large or more compact plants. The Suntrof-Mulk parabolic trough. Australia is an example of this technology. The Stirling solar dish combines a parabolic concentrating dish with a Stirling heat engine which normally drives an electric generator. Calvin Fuller and Daryl Chapin created the silicon solar cell in 1954. As of late 2009. The reflector tracks the Sun along two axes. These early solar cells cost 286 USD/watt and reached efficiencies of 4. offer higher efficiency and better energy storage capability among CSP technologies. Parabolic trough systems provide the best land-use factor of any solar technology. the highest . is a device that converts light into electric current using the photoelectric effect. consists of a stand-alone parabolic reflector that concentrates light onto a receiver positioned at the reflector's focal point. and is then used for power generation or energy storage. Concentrating Linear Fresnel Reflectors are CSP-plants which use many thin mirror strips instead of parabolic mirrors to concentrate sunlight onto two tubes with working fluid. allowing more of the available sunlight to be used. Nevada are representatives of this technology. The receiver is a tube positioned right above the middle of the parabolic mirror and is filled with a working fluid. The 500 m2 ANU "Big Dish" in Canberra. The first solar cell was constructed by Charles Fritts in the 1880s. Although the prototype selenium cells converted less than 1% of incident light into electricity. A solar bowl is a spherical dish mirror that is fixed in place.5–6%. The reflector is made to follow the Sun during the daylight hours by tracking along a single axis. California and the Planta Solar 10 in Sanlucar la Mayor.

and they remain vital to the telecommunications infrastructure today. as well as multiple types of concentrating solar power. shown here on the roof of the "Friedenskirche" in Tübingen. Germany. PV had become the established source of power for them. These are very expensive however. that photovoltaic solar panels gained use outside of back up power suppliers on spacecraft. including at least fourteen types of photovoltaic cells. and amorphous cells.efficiency PV cells were produced commercially by Boeing/SpectroLab at about 41%. There are many competing technologies. The earliest significant application of solar cells was as a back-up power source to the Vanguard I satellite in 1958. These off-grid applications accounted for over half of worldwide installed capacity until 2004.The high cost of solar cells limited terrestrial uses throughout the 1960s. Photovoltaics went on to play an essential part in the success of early commercial satellites such as Telstar. The successful operation of solar cells on this mission was duplicated in many other Soviet and American satellites. offshore oil rigs. Unfortunately. It is too early to know which technology will become dominant. which allowed it to continue transmitting for over a year after its chemical battery was exhausted. such as thin film. Other. and by the late 1960s. 100% absorption should not be confused with 100% electrical efficiency as single junction materials are bound by the so-called Shockley-Queisser limit. Early terrestrial uses included powering telecommunication stations. navigational buoys and railroad crossings. Economies of scale which resulted from increasing production along with improvements in system performance brought the price of PV down from 100 . in the 1970s. polycrystalline silicon. but are at most around 20% efficient. similar. The most recent development (from Caltech. Building-integrated photovoltaics (BIPV). March 2010) is the experimental demonstration of a new design which is an 85% efficient photon absorber in plain sunlight and 95% efficient absorber at certain wavelengths. cover the roofs of an increasing number of homes. and are used only for the most exacting applications. This changed in the early 1970s when prices reached levels that made PV generation competitive in remote areas without grid access. After the successful application of solar panels on the Vanguard satellite it still was not until the energy crisis. monocrystalline silicon. Thin film PV cells have been developed which are made in bulk and are far less expensive and much less fragile. multi-layer cells are close. The 1973 oil crisis stimulated a rapid rise in the production of PV during the 1970s and early 1980s.

CPV systems employ sunlight concentrated onto photovoltaic surfaces for the purpose of electrical power production. As a result.USD/watt in 1971 to 7 USD/watt in 1985. Spain became the largest PV market after adopting a similar feed-in tariff structure in 2004. and worldwide production growth increased to 30% in the late 1990s.S. Spain and operated for eight years before decommissioning in 1989. and expands. Installed PV capacity in Germany has risen from 100 MW in 2000 to approximately 4. As sunlight shines on the greenhouse. The expanding air flows toward the central tower. Thermoelectric. PV installations in the country climbed from 31. which are often mounted on a solar tracker in order to keep the focal point upon the cell as the sun moves across the sky. leadership in the PV sector has shifted from the US to Japan and Europe. Since the mid-1990s. After 2007. Italy. Germany became the leading PV market worldwide since revising its feed-in tariffs as part of the Renewable Energy Sources Act. First proposed as a method to store solar energy by solar pioneer Mouchout in the 1800s. Steadily falling oil prices during the early 1980s led to a reduction in funding for photovoltaic R&D and a discontinuation of the tax credits associated with the Energy Tax Act of 1978. installing almost half of the photovoltaics (45%) in the world. in 2008. established net metering guidelines. while France. A 50 kW prototype was constructed in Ciudad Real. have seen rapid growth recently due to various incentive programs and local market conditions.2 MW in 1994 to 318 MW in 1999. Solar concentrators of all varieties may be used. and by 50% in summer. EXPERIMENTAL SOLAR POWER A solar updraft tower (also known as a solar chimney or solar tower) consists of a large greenhouse that funnels into a central tower. These factors moderated growth to approximately 15% per year from 1984 through 1996. South Korea and the U. Tracking can increase flat panel photovoltaic output by 20% in winter. thermoelectrics remerged in the Soviet Union during the 1930s. the air inside is heated. The power output of domestic photovoltaic devices is usually described in kilowatt-peak (kWp) units. or "thermovoltaic" devices convert a temperature difference between dissimilar materials into an electric current. Between 1992 and 1994 Japan increased R&D funding. Under the direction of Soviet scientist Abram Ioffe a concentrating system was used to thermoelectrically generate power for a 1 hp engine. where a turbine converts the air flow into electricity. Concentrating photovoltaics (CPV) are another new method of electricity generation from the Sun.150 MW at the end of 2007. Thermogenerators were later used in the US space program as an energy conversion . and introduced a subsidy program to encourage the installation of residential PV systems. as most are from 1 to 10 kW.

Deployment strategies focused on incentive programs such as the Federal Photovoltaic Utilization Program in the US and the Sunshine Program in Japan. 2000-Present Photovoltaic production growth has averaged 40% per year since 2000 and installed capacity reached 10.73 GW in 2008. At night the earth emits it. and utility of coal and petroleum. uses nanoantennas to harvest solar power. During the day the Earth's atmosphere lets some of the infrared radiation to pass through it and absorbs the rest. However development of solar technologies stagnated in the early 20th century in the face of the increasing availability. The early development of solar technologies starting in the 1860s was driven by an expectation that coal would soon become scarce. 1970-2000 Between 1970 and 1983 photovoltaic installations grew rapidly. and Germany (Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE). DEVELOPMENT Nellis Solar Power Plant. Japan (NEDO). The 1973 oil embargo and 1979 energy crisis caused a reorganization of energy policies around the world and brought renewed attention to developing solar technologies. economy. A new technology. 14 MW power plant installed 2007 in Nevada. energy consumption has steadily transitioned from wood and biomass to fossil fuels. Other efforts included the formation of research facilities in the US (SERI.6 GW at the end of 2007 and 14. . Galileo and Viking. Research in this area is focused on raising the efficiency of these devices from 7–8% to 15–20%. but falling oil prices in the early 1980s moderated the growth of PV from 1984 to 1996.technology for powering deep space missions such as Cassini.America is the largest photovoltaic power plant in North America Beginning with the surge in coal use which accompanied the Industrial Revolution. 1950-1970 In 1965 Ormat Industries established to commercialise the Organic Rankine Cycle turbine concept. developed by the Idaho National Laboratory. Nanoantennas use the infrared radiation of the sun to convert energy. now NREL).

Financial incentives supporting installation of solar power generation are aimed at increasing demand for solar photovoltaics such that they can become competitive with conventional methods of energy production. or transported. The 11 MW PS10 power tower in Spain. The program is designed to help promote the government's green agenda and lower the strain often placed on the energy grid at peak hours. there is a new solar thermal power station being built in the Banaskantha district in North Gujarat. As of June 9. roof-top systems (≤10 kW).2 ¢/kWh and grid power for 9 ¢/kWh. Commercial concentrating solar thermal power (CSP) plants were first developed in the 1980s. Another innovative way to increase demand is to harness the green purchasing power of academic institutions (universities and colleges). 2009. in locations that experience more wind in the winter and more sun in . In March. Once completed.Since 2006 it has been economical for investors to install photovoltaics for free in return for a long term power purchase agreement. First Solar announced plans to build a 2 GW photovoltaic system in Ordos City. ENERGY STORAGE METHODS Solar energy is not available at night.2¢/kWh to solar PV energy producers. the Green Energy Act passed in 2009 created a feed-in-tariff program that pays up to 80. is Europe's first commercial CSP system. 2009 the proposed FIT was increased to 80¢/kWh for small. Wind power and solar power can be complementary. In Ontario. China in four phases consisting of 30 MW in 2010. In August 2009. were allowed to transfer the balance of their contracts to the new FIT program. and paying a maximum of 42¢/kWh. (People participating in a previous Ontario program called RESOP (Renewable Energy Standard Offer Program). This has been shown to be potentially influential in catalyzing a positive spiral-effect in renewables globally. over transmission lines. Inner Mongolia. and a total capacity of 300 MW is expected to be installed in the same area by 2013. guaranteed for 20 years. introduced in 2006. Canada. completed in late 2005. Both wind power and solar power are intermittent energy sources. it will be the world's largest. to where it can be used. 50% of commercial systems were installed in this manner in 2007 and it is expected that 90% will by 2009. Nellis Air Force Base is receiving photoelectric power for about 2. making energy storage an important issue in order to provide the continuous availability of energy. meaning that all available output must be taken when it is available and either stored for when it can be used. Solar installations in recent years have also begun to expand into residential areas. The amount scales up based on the size of the project. and another 1000 MW by 2019. with projects under 10KW receiving the highest rate. CSP plants such as SEGS project in the United States have a levelized energy cost (LEC) of 12–14 ¢/kWh. with governments offering incentive programs to make "green" energy a more economically viable option. 970 MW in 2014.

Off-grid PV systems have traditionally used rechargeable batteries to store excess electricity. The Institute for Solar Energy Supply Technology of the University of Kassel pilot-tested a combined power plant linking solar. This credit offsets electricity provided from the grid when the system cannot meet demand. but on days with no sun and no wind the difference needs to be made up in some manner. Net metering programs give these systems a credit for the electricity they deliver to the grid. allowing it to store enough heat in its 68 m³ storage tank to provide full output of 10 MWe for about 40 minutes. Combining power sources in a power plant may also address storage issues. by storing spare solar power in the form of heat. from a lower elevation reservoir to a higher elevation one. includes solar panels and pumped-storage hydroelectricity The Solar Two used this method of energy storage. have a high specific heat capacity and can deliver heat at temperatures compatible with conventional power systems. Credits are normally rolled over month to month and any remaining surplus settled annually. In 2000 the energy payback time of PV systems was estimated as 8 to 11 years and in 2006 . With grid-tied systems. and using this heat overnight or during periods that solar power is not available to produce electricity. ENERGY PAYBACK TIME The energy payback time of a power generating system is the time required to generate as much energy as was consumed during production of the system. This technology has the potential to make solar power dispatchable. wind. effectively using the grid as a storage mechanism. Salts are an effective storage medium because they are lowcost. biogas and hydrostorage to provide loadfollowing power around the clock. Pumped-storage hydroelectricity stores energy in the form of water pumped when surplus electricity is available. excess electricity can be sent to the transmission grid. for example with wind power and hydropower. Solar power installations are normally supplemented by storage or another energy source. The energy is recovered when demand is high by releasing the water: the pump becomes a turbine. with an efficiency of about 99%.the summer. have the potential to eliminate the intermittency of solar power. and the motor a hydroelectric power generator. Germany. as the heat source can be used to generate electricity at will. entirely from renewable sources. This energy park in Geesthacht.

000 times greater than standard flat panels.15 to 0. and depreciation of the capital outlay over 20 years). subsidies available and metering techniques. . It also depends on the path of the sun relative to the panel and the horizon. In 2007.5 years for thin film technologies (S.5 years for crystalline silicon PV systems and 1-1. the LCOE is estimated at $0. which varies according to local energy prices. In testing. or solar tracking can be utilized to access even more perpendicular sunlight. thereby raising the total energy output. announced that the Center had entered into a project with Zenith Solar to create a home solar energy system that uses a 10 square meter reflector dish. Physicists have claimed that recent technological developments bring the cost of solar energy more in parity with that of fossil fuels. David Faiman. They assume a 10% total capital cost (for instance 4% interest rate.22/kWh in 2005.this was estimated to be 1. the EROEI of PV systems are in the range of 10 to 30. Panels can be mounted at an angle based on latitude. the director of the Ben-Gurion National Solar Energy Center of Israel. The annual energy output in kilowatt-hours expected from each installed peak kilowatt varies by geographic region because the average insolation depends on the average cloudiness and the thickness of atmosphere traversed by the sunlight. POWER COSTS The PV industry is beginning to adopt levelized cost of energy (LCOE) as the unit of cost. Europe). The calculated total cost per kilowatt-hour of electricity generated by a photovoltaic system is a function of the investment cost. 1% operating and maintenance cost.) With lifetimes of at least 30 years. A prototype ready for commercialization achieved a concentration of solar energy that was more than 1. which is the ratio of electricity generated divided by the energy required to build and maintain the equipment. balance of system (BOS). cost of capital and depreciation period. thus generating enough energy over their lifetimes to reproduce themselves many times (6-31 reproductions) depending on what type of material. For a 10 MW plant in Phoenix. (This is not the same as the economic return on investment (ROI). is the energy returned on energy invested (EROEI) or energy return on investment (EROI). AZ. and the geographic location of the system.5 to 3. is achieved first in areas with abundant sun and high costs for electricity such as in California and Japan. closely related to the energy payback time. GRID PARITY Grid parity. the concentrated solar technology proved to be up to five times more cost effective than standard flat photovoltaic silicon panels. Another economic measure. which would make it almost the same cost as oil and natural gas. the point at which photovoltaic electricity is equal to or cheaper than grid power. The calculated values in the table reflect the total cost in cents per kilowatt-hour produced.

is to develop CSP technologies that are competitive with conventional energy sources (grid parity) by 2015. Location . 1.Grid parity has been reached in Hawaii and other islands that otherwise use fossil fuel (diesel fuel) to produce electricity. General Electric's Chief Engineer predicts grid parity without subsidies in sunny parts of the United States by around 2015. deficits are billed each month while surpluses are rolled over to the following month and paid annually. as can the noise they produce. Normally with net metering. solar power does not lead to any harmful emissions during operation. more companies enter into this market and lower cost of the photovoltaic electricity would be expected.vertical integration of the supply chain. Unlike fossil fuel based technologies. but the production of the panels leads to some amount of pollution. 3.15/kWh for most of the OECD and reach $0. as long as grid electricity prices do not decrease through 2010. the fully loaded cost is likely to fall below $0. Other companies predict an earlier date: the cost of solar power will be below grid parity for more than half of residential customers and 10% of commercial customers in the OECD. ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT The siting of solar power plants is an issue. Concentrating photovoltaics (CPV) could reach grid parity in 2011. working in collaboration with partners such as Abengoa Solar. and most of the US is expected to reach grid parity by 2015.origination of power purchase agreements (PPAs) by solar power companies. grid operators and wind turbine manufacturers.10/kWh in sunnier regions. normally in the form of pumped hydro-storage.unexpected risk for traditional power generation companies. 2.25/kWh or less in most of the OECD countries. NET METERING Net metering is particularly important because it can be done with no changes to standard electricity meters . As more photovoltaics are used ultimately additional transmission and storage will need to be provided. Abengoa Solar has announced the award of two R&D projects in the field of Concentrating Solar Power (CSP) by the US Department of Energy that total over $14 million. The fully loaded cost (cost not price) of solar electricity is $0. which accurately measure power in both directions and automatically report the difference. Placement in environmentally sensitive locations can be an issue. By late 2011. The goal of the DOE R&D program. effectively using the grid as a giant storage battery. Due to the growing demand for photovoltaic electricity. These cost levels are driving three emerging trends. and because it allows homeowners and businesses to generate electricity at a different time from consumption.

000 MW of Solar heating. some place nuclear power plants' lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions below 40 g/kWh.The location of solar power plants is an issue as more plants were built or planned. or other contaminated locations such as reclaimed landfills or mines. the other in Virginia) in which all of the energy used to manufacture solar panels is produced by solar panels. Most of these emissions actually arise through the use of coal power for the manufacturing of the modules. are better. lignite 6. compared to 600 MW of concentrating solar thermal and 149. 300 pounds of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere. but others give much higher figures.1 microgram/kWh. a coal-fired power plant 915-994 g/kWh or with carbon capture and storage some 200 g/kWh. Including the energy needed to mine uranium and the energy-intensity of power plant construction and decommissioning. and coal and lignite combustion leads to much higher emissions of cadmium. More acceptable to environmentalists is use of farmland taken out of production due to salinization or lack of water. Only wind and geothermal low-temp. Noise. For comparison (of weighted averages). an oil-fired power plant 893 g/kWh. Using renewable energy sources in manufacturing and transportation would further drop carbon emissions. a combined cycle gas-fired power plant emits some 400-599 g/kWh. and natural gas 0.3-0.000 MW at the end of 2009.2. Greenhouse gases Life cycle greenhouse gas emissions are now in the range of 25-32 g/kWh and this could decrease to 15 g/kWh in the future. and a geothermal high-temp. power plant 91-122 g/kWh. Current PV technologies lead to cadmium emissions of 0. Life-cycle cadmium emissions from coal is 3. Cadmium in its metallic form is a toxic substance that has the tendency to accumulate in ecological food chains. emitting 11 g/kWh and 0-1 g/kWh on average. cadmium emissions from coal power usage in the manufacturing process could be entirely eliminated. SOLAR POWER USAGE Grid-connected solar photovoltaics had an installed capacity of nearly 21. is another issue. Germany and Japan have been leading in terms of cumulative . BP Solar owns two factories built by Solarex (one in Maryland. and saves up to 105 gallons of water consumption monthly.9 microgram/kWh over the whole life-cycle. Locating a solar power plant in a pristine location such as the Mohave Desert raised objections. Cadmium One issue that has often raised concerns is the use of cadmium in cadmium telluride solar cells (CdTe is only used in a few types of PV panels). A 1-kilowatt system eliminates the burning of approximately 170 pounds of coal. such as that caused by hundreds of sterling engines. Note that if electricity produced by photovoltaic panels were used to manufacture the modules instead of electricity from burning coal.2 microgram/kWh. The amount of cadmium used in thin-film PV modules is relatively small (510 g/m²) and with proper emission control techniques in place the cadmium emissions from module production can be almost zero.

some large projects have been proposed. it was reported that India was ready to launch its National Solar Mission under the National Action Plan on Climate Change.000 km² area of the Thar Desert has been set aside for solar power projects.100 gigawatts. India unveiled a $19 billion plan. Solar power now meets about 1. In solar energy sector.PV capacity. and a 35. In recent years many countries (notably in Western Europe) have begun to enact financial incentives encouraging solar power. to produce 20 GW of solar power by 2020. On November 18. a share that some market analysts expect could reach 25 percent by 2050. 2009. India India is both densely populated and has high solar insolation. In July 2009.000 MW of power by 2013. with plans to generate 1.1 percent of Germany's electricity demand. Under the plan. with a solar PV capacity in 2009 of 8. solar-powered equipment and applications would be mandatory in all government buildings including hospitals and hotels. and 6. sufficient to generate 700 to 2. Germany Germany is one of the world's top photovoltaics (PV) installers. China in solar heating. Iran . providing an ideal combination for solar power.877 megawatts (MW).200 GWh of electricity generated in 2009.

and waste) provided nearly 12 percent of the nation's electricity supply in 2003. and Israel's National Infrastructure Ministry estimates that solar panels for water-heating satisfy 4% of the country's total energy demand. The calculations show that the amount of useful solar radiation hours in Iran exceeds 2800 hours per year. biomass. the Fars province. while the one installed at Hosseinian and Moalleman. The high annual incident solar irradiance in the Ne gev Desert has spurred an advanced solar research and development industry. Israel and Cyprus are the per-capita leaders in the use of solar hot water systems with over 90% of homes using them. with capacity of 5 kW DC was established in the central region of Iran in Doorbid village Yazd in 1993. with Harry Tabor and David Faiman of the National Solar Energy Center two of its more prominent members. the second photovoltaic site with 27 kW AC capacity was installed in Hosseinian and Moalleman villages in Semnan. wind. . which resulted in the building of residential and commercial solar energy power station projects. Israeli research has advanced solar technology to a degree that it is almost costcompetitive with fossil fuels. The power plant installed at Doorbid. The DoE has established the goal of generating 10-15% of the nation's energy from solar sources by 2030. the first Photovoltaic (PV) site. is connected to grid. geothermal. all new residential buildings were required by the government to install solar water-heating systems. Following this. but the Ministry of Energy News Agency mentions a 40 house solar village supplied with photovoltaic energy. Iran makes less use of photovoltaic energy.8 kWh/m. For this reason. and it is even higher in the central part of Iran. hydroelectric.4 kWh/m in central region from 2. in 1998. The capacity of these power plants has recently increased to 10 kW AC and 92 kW AC respectively.781 residential solar water heaters and 294 public baths heated with solar thermal energy. This solar thermal plant joins some 4. 450 Km inland from Tehran. Iran took its first step toward the large scale realization of that potential recently(2009) with the inauguration of its first solar energy plant.075 small scale solar thermal installations throughout Iran–3. Renewable resources (solar. Its abundant sun made the country a natural location for the promising technology. At the end of 2008 a feed-in tariff scheme was approved.1% of the county's electricity generation in 2006. Israel Solar water heaters on a rooftop in JerusalemAs of the early 1990s.23 Mega joules per square meter. United States Solar power in the United States accounted for less than 0. It is worth mentioning that all equipment of these sites is made in Iran.The average solar radiation for the whole of Iran is about 19. works independently from the grid system. The variation of radiation varies in the south-east part to 5. The plant was constructed with domestic materials and labour in Shiraz.

LIFESPAN Most commercially available solar cells are capable of producing electricity for at least twenty years without a significant decrease in efficiency. the same vehicle can use offboard renewable electricity and onboard solar panels. these last ones to extend the all-electric range or provide power to the air conditioning. or grid-connected indeed anywhere. home or business. often on a rooftop of a carport. The latter are powered by electricity generated by (flexible) solar panels located directly on the vehicles themselves. In contrast to lightweight vehicles that participate in events such as the World Solar Challenge. In any case. They combine renewable energy with all-electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) in a different manner than mere solar vehicles. solar-charged vehicles can carry more batteries and offer seating and be . wherein the output shall not fall below 85% of the rated capacity SOLAR CHARGED VEHICLE Solar-charged vehicles are vehicles that use off-board renewable electricity that can be generated in the driver's facilities. that is. by electricity generated by solar panels or wind turbines located elsewhere offboard of the vehicle. Solar-charged vehicles are indirectly powered by renewable electricity. The typical warranty given by panel manufacturers is for a period of 25 – 30 years.

The organisers introduced racing classes allowing roadside charging with panels carried by support vehicles. and Australia. provided that the team could prove ownership of enough grid-feeding solar panels anywhere in the world. Electric bicycles are easy to use as solarcharged vehicles because only a rather small panel area is needed (that can be in a solar jacket). produced by Chris Paine. For example. and later with electricity from the grid. In fact.used like internal combustion engine powered vehicles: cars . where a solarcharged bus is being used by the City of Adelaide. bicycles or boats. Plug In America has also published a list of selected . This movement received a considerable boost with the release of the now cult-classic documentary Who Killed the Electric Car?. Tesla Motors recently delivered its 1. solar-charged vehicles evolved soon after the first solar racing vehicles of the Tour de Sol in 1985. Some manufacturers of these vehicles sell their customers solar electricity along with the bicycles. Some Roadster owners have publicized their solar-charged driving experiences with the Tesla Roadster online. are members of a plug-in electric vehicle (PEV) movement which grew out of the opposition to the confiscation and subsequent destruction of EVs such as the General Motors EV1 and the Toyota RAV4 EV by large automakers in the early 2000s. Solar-charged plug-in stations are also appearing in other places such as Hawaii and Japan. New York City recently saw its first solar-charged plug-in station unveiled. interest in solarcharged vehicles is fast growing. Paine is currently working on a follow-up to this documentary called Revenge of the Electric Car. The number of solar-charged vehicles is currently small.has so far been the province of a relatively few people. Numbers of solar-charged vehicles It’s unclear how many solar-charged vehicles there are currently in the United States. Generally. Mitsubishi and Ford begin rolling EVs and PHEVs off their assembly lines in large numbers and conversion of combustion vehicles to plug-ins. the solar + EV/PHEV synergy – often simply referred to as EV/PV. However. EV+PV or PVEV-.S. or the world.000th Tesla Roadster.S. Many of those solar-charging their vehicles in the U. it is possible that the comparatively low number of solar-charged vehicles will soon increase as a combination of small automotive start-ups such as Tesla Motors and Coda Automotive and major automakers such as Nissan. have also solar-charged their electric vehicles. The production and consumption of solar energy became separated both in place and in time. Some celebrities in the U. The rooftop solar panels could work at their full capacity whereas on-board panels have nothing to do once the vehicles' batteries are fully charged. motorcycles. However. GM. in part because mainstream EVs have not been widely available to consumers. HISTORY Historically.

has also solar-charged her Toyota RAV4 EV for about a year while living in Malibu.current EV owners on its web site. Solar-charged vehicles and air pollution Solar-charged vehicles have the potential to substantially reduce air pollution. charge the batteries of their EVs.S. The solar PV system generates nearly 70. Environment Texas has published an analysis of more than 40 research reports on the environmental impact of electric cars. The Sierra Club has also profiled three solar-charged drivers on its web pages. Calif. More specifically.000 kilowatt hours of renewable electricity each year and is the city’s largest grid-connected PV system. actress Rachelle Carson. SOLAR CHARGED BUSES Automobiles are not the only solar-charged vehicles.which it named Tindo -. the report points to a 2003 study by the . the report concludes that an electric vehicle fleet powered by renewable electricity. Former Baywatch star and environmental activist Alexandra Paul. Begley powers many of his annual miles in a Toyota RAV4 EV with solargenerated electricity. Begley currently has a reality show about green living called Living With Ed on Planet Green with his wife. or partially. Australia purchased an electric bus -. Entitled 'Plug-In Cars: Powering America Toward a Cleaner Future'.whose batteries are 100-percent solar-charged by a solar-installation on the Adelaide Central Bus Station. Celebrity solar-charged drivers Perhaps the most famous of those currently driving a solar-charged vehicle is Ed Begley Jr. and many of these use solar energy to fully. such as solar and wind. the City of Adelaide. could virtually eliminate air pollution in the U. For example. For example.

Discharging time is generally 8 to 10 hours. They are frequently used to mark. A garden solar lamp Solar panel on top the lamp recharges the battery. for example.S. Indoor solar lamps are also used for general illumination (i. a photovoltaic solar panel. and one or more rechargeable batteries.University of California. Solar lamps recharge during the day.e. total U. and come in a wide variety of designs. Berkeley Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology which concluded that if half of the light vehicles in the United States were electric vehicles powered by completely clean renewable electricity in 2030. off and automatic) and remain illuminated overnight. . and provide a cheaper alternative to wired lamps. Solar lights are used for decoration.Outdoor lamps are used for lawn and garden decorations. Some solar lights do not provide as much light (watts) as a line-powered lighting system. They are sometimes holiday-themed and may come in animal shapes. footpaths or the areas around swimming pools. they turn on (usually automatically. but they are easily installed and maintained. for garages and the solar panel is deattached of the LED lamp). depending on how much sunlight they receive during the day. although some of them includes a switch for on. At dusk. fleet emissions would be reduced by 62 percent. SOLAR LAMP A solar lamp is a portable light fixture composed of a LED lamp.