Recent global events have highlighted, yet again, our reliance on non-renewable energy sources. The demand for natural gas and other fossil fuels shows no signs of abating and we are all going to have to make serious life and society choices at some point. There is still research ongoing into one source of potential power that is always there, it is the Sun.
The direct rays of the sun can be both beneficial and dangerous. Too much exposure can see your skin burn and can lead to skin cancers. However, with Brise Soleil systems, like those from alusystems.uk/ as an example, you can deflect the worst of it away from a building’s frontage to keep the temperature down.
On the roof, it’s quite another matter. Here we should start to see more Solar panels. Solar panels work by absorbing the sun’s rays. Vast arrays of solar panels can now be seen in fields and on top of high rises and residential buildings. The solar panels take the rays and generate DC electricity. This in itself cannot be used. However, the panels use something called inverter technology that changes the current to AC which we can use. This is then channelled into the power system of the building.
In theory, all homes should be able to become self-sufficient in terms of energy generation. The panels can also store energy for when it’s needed. You don’t need to wait for a sunny day to put the dishwasher on.