Affordable Solar Energy

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In case you missed reading this article from the MIT News, I’ll supply the link here.

An excerpt:

In a revolutionary leap that could transform solar power from a marginal, boutique alternative into a mainstream energy source, MIT researchers have overcome a major barrier to large-scale solar power: storing energy for use when the sun doesn’t shine.

Until now, solar power has been a daytime-only energy source, because storing extra solar energy for later use is prohibitively expensive and grossly inefficient. With today’s announcement, MIT researchers have hit upon a simple, inexpensive, highly efficient process for storing solar energy.

Great news! Solar energy when the sun doesn’t shine. This is clean energy and one that really packs a punch. Just think about how much warmth the sun provides to this planet even though the average distance between the earth and the sun is 92,900,000 miles (149476000 kilometers). That is an extremely powerful source of energy.

Sunlight has the greatest potential of any power source to solve the world’s energy problems, said Nocera. In one hour, enough sunlight strikes the Earth to provide the entire planet’s energy needs for one year.

The researchers at MIT are not quite there, yet, but they will be soon. This is a must read and will benefit us greatly. It is the photosynthesis of plants that got these scientists thinking about how to split water molecules using the sun’s energy and then storing the hydrogen and oxygen gases in a fuel cell to be used as a carbon free source of energy. Brilliant!

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3 thoughts on “Affordable Solar Energy”

  1. Cats, since energy and water issues became problems I have always believed that the Earth as everything we need free and abundantly to solve our problems.

    1. Why can’t we harness and use ocean water as fuel and for drinking?

    2. Why isn’t every outdoor and public light source solar? I believe that there has to be a way to harness solar today so that it can be used at night. There could be solar generators that we turn on at night.

    Yes that sounds HUGE. But when computers started out they were the size of an entire room; today they’re the size of a pinhead. If enough research was done something similar would be done for solar.

    3. Why isn’t every home, especially in the West (Nevada, California, New Mexico, Arizona, etc) and the SE (Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina and North Carolina) not fully equipped with solar energy?

    Probable answer — because of the lobbyists and PACs from energy companies lobbying Congress and the like to prevent research and development. Can you imagine how much money electric companies, gas companies and the utilities stand to lose?

    Sadly it’s all about the mighty dollar. We could have been energy independent for decades. After all, we have sent men to the moon and figured out how to survive there. We have figured out how to suspend huge satellites and the Hubble telescope in outer space – why couldn’t we have researched better, cheaper energy solutions?

    I am not scientifically inclined and can think of a few possible directions to go in; can you imagine the brilliant ideas scientists have?

  2. Paulette, I was telling my husband the same thing that you stated about computers and how quickly computers became everyday household items and that I believe that once alternative means of energy become more practical, it will be all that we use.

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