Category Archives: Solar & Wind

Solar Energy, hazard or a blessing?

Solar energy has enough potential to change the manner the world gets its power! Solar energy is among the world’s cleanest and most potential forms of energy, plans to develop utility scale solar farms have raised concerns over effective environmental hazards. Although solar farms provide with amazing benefits but do have some impact on the environment and surroundings.

Now as we know that burning of fossil fuels for the gain of energy remains the source of carbon dioxide emissions but on the contrary, solar power emissions-free form of energy, and it is true that greenhouse gas emissions from solar are also negligible.

Having said that, solar system do not require any water to make electricity. Although some solar thermal systems use water, but this water can be reused easily.

Adding one more point to the advantages of solar energy is, solar energy systems require less amount of land space but utility scale solar farms, on the contrary, do require vast amounts of land to produce electricity!

Well everything on Earth has a good and bad side so there are some hazardous effects of solar energy. Solar energy may also be used to make hazardous materials like oils and molten salts.

So solar panels evoke some good positive feelings, even when set in a natural landscape!

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Energy Saving Projects on Big Scale

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Life is not possible without energy, but the current ways of consuming energy would leave us with nothing in the near future, but a polluted environment and lack of every source and facility.

Hence, several alternative methods have been developed, and many are yet to be formulated and the existing ones need to be improved.

These methods of producing green energy are being enhanced and every possible effort is being made to bring this alternative source of energy into common use.

When talking about recycling energy, the projects of National Trusts come to our minds immediately. Reviewing their energy projects creates an optimistic image of a healthy environment.

Its Biomass Boiler Installations works on the idea of replacing oil heating system with low carbon equivalent. This project that is developed in Chirk Castle, works on this idea of replacing the old boiler system with the biomass ones.

An attempt of National Trust to reduced carbon emission came out in the form of use of carbon neutral biomass boilers instead of the old ones. Two oil-fired boilers were replaced with a wooden pellet biomass boiler in Sudbury Hall, Derbyshire.

Another technique developed by National Trust to use natural wind energy was developed in The Old Coastguard Lookout building. The project makes use of Pellet stoves and wind turbines to charge batteries in a coastguard station.

Yet another project that aims at installing solar thermal units for providing heated water to flats is in the Hanbury Hall.

The above mentioned were only a few projects. There are still many more that shall be discussed in future blog posts.

About Renewing Solar Energy

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Hurry up, we earthly beings are running short of useful energy every second. And our scientists fear that we would leave the generations to come with nothing but a world where they have to start everything from scratch, perform everything with hands, just as man used to do earlier.
How can we help? Well, we can contribute in preserving energy. But that is not it. We must also adopt alternative energy sources like the ones we have discussed previously- solar panels, geothermal energy, etc.
Let s talk about using solar energy in place of the regular one.

PHOTOVOLTAICS, are set ups that use solar radiation to convert into direct electric power, and they do this by the help of certain semi conductors. Its power generation requires solar panels.

SOLAR WATER HEAT, as the name clearly indicates, is a green renewable heating system that makes use of heat from sun to warm water. Besides the domestic uses, Solar Power Heaters also serve to be useful for industrial purposes. It is really good if one wants to install this purely natural means of power supply in their house. However, there are few things that must be considered, such as the orientation of your house, which must be well angulated if you are about to install solar hot water and photovoltaics. Moreover, if your property is located in such a place that is surrounded by dense volumes of trees, then this may create hindrance in the absorption of solar power. Not only the trees, but the presence of tall buildings in your surroundings will also leave you facing this problem.

Wind as a renewable energy

For centuries, fossil fuels have been the main source of power for the industry and households. Plentiful and comparatively cheap to produce, coal and oil powered the Industrial Revolution and led to the growth of many modern economies. Today, however, we are more and more aware of the harmful effects of these fuel sources. Not only can they be dangerous pollutants, but the supply of fossil fuels is finite. More and more societies and businesses are seeking out sources of energy that won’t run out or cause damage to the environment.

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There are many different types of alternative energy sources, ranging from hydroelectric dams to photovoltaic solar panels. Each of them has its own strengths and weaknesses and can work differently in different environments. One of the most common alternative energy sources is wind power.

As a method of producing energy, the wind has a lot going for it. The wind is completely free, produces no pollution and never runs out. The technology of wind power generation is relatively simple, with some similarities to hydroelectric power.

Like water power, wind power relies on turning the energy of a moving substance — kinetic energy — into electrical energy. It does this by means of a rotating turbine; as the turbine spins, it generates electricity. A wind turbine has blades that resemble a propeller, and as the wind spins the blades, a system of gears rotates the turbine.

Like solar power, wind turbines can work either on a large or a local scale. Large areas of wind turbines, called “wind farms,” harness high winds to channel power to a national or regional power grid, while single wind turbines or small groups can provide power to a home or business. In either case, the key to successful wind power generation is location.

In order for a wind turbine to create a reliable power output, it needs to be in a location where it can have regular access to wind. To further complicate matters, not just any wind will do. Most wind turbines have an optimum wind speed. A wind speed between 7 and 25 meters a second is typical for most heavy wind turbines. If the wind speed is too low, it will not be able to turn the blades; if it is too high, the turbine may shut down in order to avoid being damaged.

A wind turbine therefore has to be placed in a location where the prevailing winds will blow at a steady rate. This usually means a high location such as a hill or a wide, flat area such as a shoreline or plain.

Wind turbines come in a variety of sizes and produce a wide range of different power outputs. A large wind turbine such as might be used in a wind farm might put out up to 4.5 megawatts. By contrast, a smaller wind turbine used in the home or at a business might generate around 1 to 6 kW.

The main challenges to wind power as an energy alternative relate to the construction of wind farms. In some regions, the positioning of wind farms in areas of scenic beauty has attracted criticism from conservationists who feel that they spoil the natural balance of the affected areas. Additionally, large wind turbines can be expensive to construct, meaning that they take some years to recoup their costs in energy savings, although smaller domestic-scale turbines can actually be surprisingly affordable as renewable energy sources.

Rösler and Birkner Informed About Wind Energy Development

 

Norddeich – Lower Saxony Environment Minister Stefan Birkner (FDP) called for a rapid expansion of wind energy required at sea. The federal government is now asked to take the necessary steps to ensure the current crisis in the connection of offshore to stop wind farms. This was said Monday, during a visit of the first German offshore wind farm “Alpha Ventus”, together with Germany’s Economics Minister Philipp Rösler (FDP). Both politicians wanted to inform themselves about the progress of the expansion of offshore wind energy as an important pillar for the implementation of energy policy.

The main points of Roesler’s view were energy security, environmental sustainability and affordability of energy. He advocated for three to four years of environmental regulations, so that the expansion of the networks was progressing rapidly.

The procedure proposed by the federal system of government changed the resolution of the outstanding liability issues and proper steps for the further acceleration of the offshore grid connections, Birkner said. He set out that there had been a bill soon, and subsequently, the economy continues to invest in wind farms. He proposed to establish the participation of a German federal offshore grid company.

The “Alpha Ventus” wind farm is located 45 kilometers off the North Sea island of Borkum, and consists of twelve wind power plants in April 2010.

 

 

Solar Storm Warning Saturday Night

 

 

Since last Thursday, July 12, it was noted that the solar storm could cause problems in air traffic, satellite navigation systems (GPS) and the electrical flow, especially in Scandinavia and northern Germany. But for the moment, it has not yet made ​​these effects. So far, only a few have reported interference to radio communications on flights over the poles.

In northern Europe, it was expected to see northern lights—a phenomena that have already been observed in some regions of Siberia, and that the solar storm had an intensity of G3 on a scale of G1 (weak) to G5 (intense).

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the United States, says that while the sun increases its activity, the eruptions of the previous months have not exceeded the fears.

The predictions of solar storms have improved in recent years at the same time it reduced damage to the satellites.

 

 

Ecuador Prepares for El Niño

 

Quito – The Government of Ecuador announced today the start of a process of investigation and preparation for the eventual emergence of ocean-atmosphere phenomenon, El Niño, which could occur in the last months of the year.

The National Secretariat for Risk Management (SNGR) explained that the specialized agencies and foreign nationals who study the phenomenon have warned that this year could present the anomaly with a weak to moderate intensity.

El Niño is a phenomenon that appears periodically in the central Pacific Ocean and is characterized by increased sea temperatures, leading to increased moisture reaching the mainland.

The phenomenon is presented as a warm current that runs zero parallel by the west to hit the mainland coasts of South America. The El Niño usually causes climate changes in the area, especially heavy rain, although its effects have reached other parts of the world.

The head of the SNGR, Maria del Pilar Cornejo, said at a press conference in the port city of Guayaquil, that they will advance the so-called “watching cruises,” running specialized institutions to investigate marine and atmospheric conditions in the coastal area of ​​the country.

This research aims to clarify the magnitude of the event and the “potential impact” of the storms generated when it appears, Cornejo said.

“Normally these observations are made in September, but was held since July. We work because we can not handle the threat of this phenomenon, but we can manage the vulnerability” she said.

The secretary also highlighted the work of the Committee on Regional Study of El Niño (ERFEN), composed of delegates from Colombia , Ecuador, Peru and Chile, who provides specialized information on the phenomenon.

Cornejo recalled that last June 20, was held a meeting of the Regional Committee to analyze the probability of the El Niño and recommend to government to mitigate its negative impacts.

For his part, the head of the Department of Marine Sciences of Ecuador, Edwin Pinto, said that mid-July will begin a “periodic monitoring in the Galapagos Islands” and in the ocean that separates the continent, both surface and 500 meters deep.

The Uses of Solar Energy

The sun is our nearest star, and (directly or indirectly) the source of almost all the energy available on earth. The sun’s energy comes from nuclear reactions in the center of the sun where the temperature is 15 million° C. This is the Fusion, which combine the hydrogen atoms themselves. This creates a large amount of helium and energy is released.

Every second, there is about 600 million transfer of hydrogen into helium. This energy spreads in the form of light and heat into space. Nuclear fusion takes place in the sun for 5 billion years (the age of the sun) and this will continue for so long. Solar energy is the starting point of most energy sources.

The main principles of the direct utilization of solar energy are:

Solar collectors – the preparation of hot water and heating the rooms
Photovoltaics – the direct conversion of solar energy into electrical energy
The concentration (focusing) of solar energy – the energy consumption in large plants

The “Ring of Fire”

Thousands of people are planning viewing parties for the solar eclipse on May 20, a rare event in which the sun appears as a thin ring behind the moon. The eclipse will start in Asia on Monday morning, when it will be visible in southern Japan and southern China. In the U.S., the eclipse will be visible in northeast Texas through New Mexico, northeastern Arizona, southern Utah and Nevada, northern California and southwestern Oregon on Sunday night.

“I encourage anyone who has the opportunity to see this, because although it happens occasionally, is a fairly rare event,” said Jeffrey Newmark, a specialist in solar physics at NASA.

During an annular eclipse, the moon does not block the entire sun but leaves a bright ring of light visible at the edges, according to NASA.

“For the eclipse of May, the moon will be as far away from Earth than ever achieved, which means it blocks the smallest possible portion of the sun, and leaves the largest possible bright ring around the outside,” says the agency on its website. An annular eclipse last appeared in the U.S. in 1994. The next solar eclipse will be on November 13 and is expected to be visible in northern Australia, according to NASA.

In the western United States, more than 1,000 people could flood the small town of Kanarraville, Utah, a town of 300 inhabitants, to achieve one of the best views of the event on Sunday, said Bonnie Char, spokeswoman for the tourist office Cedar City. The people are calling eclipse “Ring of Fire”.

 

The Cryosphere

The cryosphere consists of the regions covered by snow or ice, whether land or sea. Including Antarctica, the Arctic Ocean, Greenland, Northern Canada, Northern Siberia and most of the highest peaks of mountain ranges.

The cryosphere plays an important role in regulating global climate.

The snow and ice have a high albedo, therefore, parts of the Antarctic reflect up to 90% of incident solar radiation, compared to the overall average of 31%. Without the cryosphere, the overall albedo would be considerably lower. More energy would be absorbed at the earth’s surface and consequently, the air temperature would be higher.

The cryopsphere also has a role in disconnecting the atmosphere with the oceans, reducing moisture transfer and momentum. It stabilizes the transfer of energy into the atmosphere. Finally, its presence markedly affects the volume of the oceans and global sea levels. Changes in the cryosphere can affect the energy budget of the climate.