Energy

About: <p><strong>Nowadays, you can find everywhere solar panels. On roofs, cars, bikes, trailers, and even floating on water. But how do they work, and how is it used?</strong></p> <h2>Solar Energy: How Does It Work?</h2> <ul> <li>To generate solar energy, the photons radiated from the sun to earth must be collected, converted into a usable format, and then delivered to an electronic device or the electric grid.</li> <li>An inverter is used to convert the electricity from the photovoltaic array into a format that can power most devices and make sure the voltage level is consistent.</li> <li>Finally, the power can be supplied to the electrical grid or directly to a home, business, or other location for immediate use. Also, some systems can move the array of cells, so they remain in the best position to collect solar energy.</li> </ul> <h2>Photovoltaic Arrays</h2> <p>Photovoltaic (PV) arrays are groups of PV cells connected to supply more energy than a single cell could provide. PV cells are made from specially treated silicon made, so the material has a positive side and a negative side, allowing it to transmit electricity. The cell is then attached to several other cells using metal connectors; that group of cells is connected to a frame for support, making a PV module. The modules are connected to create a PV array with a single electrical output connected to the rest of the system.</p> <h2>Inverters</h2> <p>The solar energy generated by the PV array is direct current (DC) electricity, which cannot be used by many electronic devices or returned to the electrical grid because they use alternating current (AC) power. Also, solar arrays do not generate a consistent amount of energy because of variations in light hitting the PV cells.</p> <p>The inverter and transformer correct these issues by modifying the amount and type of electrical power supplied by the system. The inverter converts DC power into AC power that can be used by other electric systems and ensures the voltage level delivered by the system is constant.</p> <h2>Photovoltaic Array Controllers</h2> <p>Since the amount of energy generated by PV cells is directly related to the amount of sunlight hitting them, the output from a solar energy system is impacted by the position of the PV array concerning the sun. To maximize the efficiency of the generation system, a solar tracker and array controllers can be used. The solar tracker will follow the position of the sun by using light sensors; the controllers can move the PV arrays based on the output from the solar tracker, ensuring that the highest possible amount of solar energy is generated.</p> <h2>Delivering Solar Energy</h2> <p>Once the electricity generated by the PV array has been converted into a usable format, it can be used to electrical power devices. The solar energy generation system can be installed, so power is delivered directly to any electrical appliances it is attached to or connected in parallel with the electrical grid.</p> <p><strong>Before you go!</strong></p> <p><em><strong>Recommended:&nbsp;</strong><a href="https://www.whatsorb.com/energy/solar-farms-in-space-next-step-in-renewable-energy"><strong>Solar Space Farms: Next Step In Renewable Energy</strong></a></em></p> <p><em><strong>Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below.<br />We try to respond the same day.<br /></strong></em></p> <p><em><strong>Like to write your article about solar energy?<br />Send your writing &amp; scribble with a photo to&nbsp;<a href="mailto:[email protected]">[email protected]</a>, and we will write an interesting article based on your input.</strong></em></p>
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Solar Space Farms: Next Step In Renewable Energy
The green energy revolution continues to accelerate - solar parks are a familiar sight all over the world. But China wants to take solar energy to a whole new level. The nation’s ambition is to put a solar power station in orbit by 2050, a solar space farm. Solar Space Farm With this solar space farm, China will have access to the most reliable source of renewable energy, since the sun always shines in space. If this costly and challenging plan will work, it will make China the first nation to harness the sun’s energy in space and beam it to Earth. Are solar space farms the answer to our prayers or a mission impossible? Solar Energy: The Inexhaustible Source It seems to be a great idea: a solar space farm as an inexhaustible source of energy. "You don’t have to deal with the day and night cycle, and you don’t have to deal with clouds or seasons, so you end up having eight to nine times more solar power available to you," said Ali Hajimiri, a professor of electrical engineering at the California Institute of Technology and director of the university’s Space Solar Power Project for solar space farms. Recommended: Solar Energy Turned Into Liquid Fuel Can Be Stored For 18 Years Energy Demands So why haven’t anyone thought of this before? Well, the thought of using solar space farms is nothing new. The idea was very vivid in the 1970s. The research stalled mainly because the technological demands of a solar power station in space were thought to be too complicated. But nowadays, there is a massive progression in technology compared to a few years ago. The improvements in the design and efficiency of photovoltaic cells and advances in wireless transmission are making it possible to pick up where researchers left off. How much of a difference will these improvements make? Asked John Mankins, a physicist who led the agency’s efforts in the field in the 1990s before NASA abandoned the investigation. “We’re seeing a bit of a resurgence now, and it’s probably because the ability to make solar farms in space is there, thanks to new technologies."   According to Mankins, there is another factor driving the revived interest in this kind of renewable power. The world’s population is growing – it’s expected to swell to 9 billion by 2050. Space-based solar power can become essential to meet the energy demands of people in parts of the world that aren’t mainly sunny. “If you look at the next 50 years, the energy demand is stupendous. If you can harvest sunlight with solar farms in space where the sun is always shining and deliver it with essentially no interruptions to Earth — and you can do all that at an affordable price, you win." {youtube}                                                       Solar Farms In Space: Next Step In Renewable Energy                                                                                Solar Space Farm: Is The Mission Impossible? Details of China’s plan remain a secret. According to Mankins, the nation can 'launch tens of thousands of 'solar satellites' that would link up to form an enormous cone-shaped structure that orbits about 22,000 miles above Earth. They would be covered with photovoltaic panels to convert sunlight into energy, which would be beamed wirelessly to ground-based receivers. Such a solar facility could generate a steady flow of 2,000 gigawatts of power.’ There are still some hurdles to overcome, like the weight of the solar panels. Recommended: Waste In Space Will Be Fetched By The Cubesail carbage Truck It will also cost billions of dollars to make these solar farms in space happen. The research, the tests, and the solar satellites itself (price tag: about ten billion each) will make this a costly project. China hasn’t revealed how much it’s spending to develop its solar power stations. Still, the China Daily reported that the nation is already building a test facility in the southwestern city of Chongqing. It doesn’t seem like a mission impossible. China is taking a key position in the development of solar farms in space. According to John Mankins, a solar power station in space is a beautiful thing. “For a lot of locations, rooftop solar is fabulous, but a lot of the world is not like Arizona (or other sunny places). Millions of people live where large, ground-based solar arrays are not economical,” he said. Mankins hailed recent developments in the field and said he is keen to follow China’s new initiative. What do you think - is this the next step in renewable energy? Before you go! Recommended:  Recycling Human Waste In Space Into Plastic Tools And Food Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about green energy from space? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
The green energy revolution continues to accelerate - solar parks are a familiar sight all over the world. But China wants to take solar energy to a whole new level. The nation’s ambition is to put a solar power station in orbit by 2050, a solar space farm. Solar Space Farm With this solar space farm, China will have access to the most reliable source of renewable energy, since the sun always shines in space. If this costly and challenging plan will work, it will make China the first nation to harness the sun’s energy in space and beam it to Earth. Are solar space farms the answer to our prayers or a mission impossible? Solar Energy: The Inexhaustible Source It seems to be a great idea: a solar space farm as an inexhaustible source of energy. "You don’t have to deal with the day and night cycle, and you don’t have to deal with clouds or seasons, so you end up having eight to nine times more solar power available to you," said Ali Hajimiri, a professor of electrical engineering at the California Institute of Technology and director of the university’s Space Solar Power Project for solar space farms. Recommended: Solar Energy Turned Into Liquid Fuel Can Be Stored For 18 Years Energy Demands So why haven’t anyone thought of this before? Well, the thought of using solar space farms is nothing new. The idea was very vivid in the 1970s. The research stalled mainly because the technological demands of a solar power station in space were thought to be too complicated. But nowadays, there is a massive progression in technology compared to a few years ago. The improvements in the design and efficiency of photovoltaic cells and advances in wireless transmission are making it possible to pick up where researchers left off. How much of a difference will these improvements make? Asked John Mankins, a physicist who led the agency’s efforts in the field in the 1990s before NASA abandoned the investigation. “We’re seeing a bit of a resurgence now, and it’s probably because the ability to make solar farms in space is there, thanks to new technologies."   According to Mankins, there is another factor driving the revived interest in this kind of renewable power. The world’s population is growing – it’s expected to swell to 9 billion by 2050. Space-based solar power can become essential to meet the energy demands of people in parts of the world that aren’t mainly sunny. “If you look at the next 50 years, the energy demand is stupendous. If you can harvest sunlight with solar farms in space where the sun is always shining and deliver it with essentially no interruptions to Earth — and you can do all that at an affordable price, you win." {youtube}                                                       Solar Farms In Space: Next Step In Renewable Energy                                                                                Solar Space Farm: Is The Mission Impossible? Details of China’s plan remain a secret. According to Mankins, the nation can 'launch tens of thousands of 'solar satellites' that would link up to form an enormous cone-shaped structure that orbits about 22,000 miles above Earth. They would be covered with photovoltaic panels to convert sunlight into energy, which would be beamed wirelessly to ground-based receivers. Such a solar facility could generate a steady flow of 2,000 gigawatts of power.’ There are still some hurdles to overcome, like the weight of the solar panels. Recommended: Waste In Space Will Be Fetched By The Cubesail carbage Truck It will also cost billions of dollars to make these solar farms in space happen. The research, the tests, and the solar satellites itself (price tag: about ten billion each) will make this a costly project. China hasn’t revealed how much it’s spending to develop its solar power stations. Still, the China Daily reported that the nation is already building a test facility in the southwestern city of Chongqing. It doesn’t seem like a mission impossible. China is taking a key position in the development of solar farms in space. According to John Mankins, a solar power station in space is a beautiful thing. “For a lot of locations, rooftop solar is fabulous, but a lot of the world is not like Arizona (or other sunny places). Millions of people live where large, ground-based solar arrays are not economical,” he said. Mankins hailed recent developments in the field and said he is keen to follow China’s new initiative. What do you think - is this the next step in renewable energy? Before you go! Recommended:  Recycling Human Waste In Space Into Plastic Tools And Food Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about green energy from space? Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Solar Space Farms: Next Step In Renewable Energy
Solar Space Farms: Next Step In Renewable Energy
Solar Panel That Fits On A Soap Bubble And Robots
When it comes to solar panels, the rule is usually that the bigger, the better - or, at least, the more energy that they generate. At the same time, people are eager for solar panels that are taking up less space. This is why I am so happy to introduce a revolutionary concept - that will be invaluable in creating wireless power sources for a wide range of applications. Solar Panel That Fits On A Soap Bubble And Robots Recently, professor Derya Baran and her team published a groundbreaking study in Advanced Materials Technologies: solar panels that are so thin and flexible that they could fit in a soap bubble and be printed on regular printers. Now that is quite a headline. Photo by: KAUST; Anastasia Serin Recommended:  Electric Solar Car 2020 Never Needs Charging Solar Panel As Electronic Skin There are too many innovations that find themselves hindered by the absence of a suitable, fitting power source. If we are to truly become sustainable, renewable energy generators embedded in the device itself is the way to go. Only if there is some kind of power-generating electronic skin for robots and sensors, the sky would be the limit. Now, the team from the King Abdullah University of Science & Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia came up with a solution. According to lead researcher Eloïse Bihar, “ Rather than bulky batteries or a connection to an electrical grid, we thought of using lightweight, ultrathin organic solar cells to harvest energy from light, whether indoors or outdoors. ” These organic cells represent the future. They have already been used in the production of ultralight solar panels for small devices and applications, such as drones. These are, however, inherently difficult to produce under the current manufacturing practices.     Photo by Anastasia Serin Solar Panels Created With An Inkjet Printer The solution that the KAUST team came up with is refreshingly simple: inkjet printing. This conventional technique is easy to integrate with pretty much any manufacturing process, while it shows remarkable versatility, easy customization, and low costs. Recommended:  Sustainable Green 3D Printed Boulder House: Netherlands . So basically, you can print your solar panel. How amazing is that? The workings are relatively simple, or so the team explains: “We formulated functional inks for each the layer of the solar cell architecture. Inkjet printing is a science on its own. The intermolecular forces within the cartridge and the ink need to be overcome to eject very fine droplets from the tiny nozzle. Solvents also play an important role once the ink is deposited because the drying behavior affects film quality. ” For the construction, a conductive polymer is used to sandwiches the light-capturing material in a thin film. This is then sealed using a perylene coating, which provides flexibility and prevents degradation. All of this showed when printed on glass, a power conversion efficiency of 4.73 percent. While it may not sound impressive, it certainly is - the previous record was at 4.1%. Recommended:  Printing Without Cartridge Waste: Goodbye To Polluting Next, the team moved on to an ultra-thin flexible substrate, for which efficiency of 3.6% was reached. This is a big deal - as it may become a power source for such objects as robots or skin-based or implanted medical devices. It would open up an entirely new wealth of opportunities. Definitely something worth being excited about! Before you go! Recommended:  Gravitricity: Key Energy Storage, Or Too Good To Be True? Do you like this article about Gravitricity, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write and publish your article about renewable energy? Send your writing & scribble with a photo to [email protected] , and we will write an interesting article based on your input.
When it comes to solar panels, the rule is usually that the bigger, the better - or, at least, the more energy that they generate. At the same time, people are eager for solar panels that are taking up less space. This is why I am so happy to introduce a revolutionary concept - that will be invaluable in creating wireless power sources for a wide range of applications. Solar Panel That Fits On A Soap Bubble And Robots Recently, professor Derya Baran and her team published a groundbreaking study in Advanced Materials Technologies: solar panels that are so thin and flexible that they could fit in a soap bubble and be printed on regular printers. Now that is quite a headline. Photo by: KAUST; Anastasia Serin Recommended:  Electric Solar Car 2020 Never Needs Charging Solar Panel As Electronic Skin There are too many innovations that find themselves hindered by the absence of a suitable, fitting power source. If we are to truly become sustainable, renewable energy generators embedded in the device itself is the way to go. Only if there is some kind of power-generating electronic skin for robots and sensors, the sky would be the limit. Now, the team from the King Abdullah University of Science & Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia came up with a solution. According to lead researcher Eloïse Bihar, “ Rather than bulky batteries or a connection to an electrical grid, we thought of using lightweight, ultrathin organic solar cells to harvest energy from light, whether indoors or outdoors. ” These organic cells represent the future. They have already been used in the production of ultralight solar panels for small devices and applications, such as drones. These are, however, inherently difficult to produce under the current manufacturing practices.     Photo by Anastasia Serin Solar Panels Created With An Inkjet Printer The solution that the KAUST team came up with is refreshingly simple: inkjet printing. This conventional technique is easy to integrate with pretty much any manufacturing process, while it shows remarkable versatility, easy customization, and low costs. Recommended:  Sustainable Green 3D Printed Boulder House: Netherlands . So basically, you can print your solar panel. How amazing is that? The workings are relatively simple, or so the team explains: “We formulated functional inks for each the layer of the solar cell architecture. Inkjet printing is a science on its own. The intermolecular forces within the cartridge and the ink need to be overcome to eject very fine droplets from the tiny nozzle. Solvents also play an important role once the ink is deposited because the drying behavior affects film quality. ” For the construction, a conductive polymer is used to sandwiches the light-capturing material in a thin film. This is then sealed using a perylene coating, which provides flexibility and prevents degradation. All of this showed when printed on glass, a power conversion efficiency of 4.73 percent. While it may not sound impressive, it certainly is - the previous record was at 4.1%. Recommended:  Printing Without Cartridge Waste: Goodbye To Polluting Next, the team moved on to an ultra-thin flexible substrate, for which efficiency of 3.6% was reached. This is a big deal - as it may become a power source for such objects as robots or skin-based or implanted medical devices. It would open up an entirely new wealth of opportunities. Definitely something worth being excited about! Before you go! Recommended:  Gravitricity: Key Energy Storage, Or Too Good To Be True? Do you like this article about Gravitricity, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write and publish your article about renewable energy? Send your writing & scribble with a photo to [email protected] , and we will write an interesting article based on your input.
Solar Panel That Fits On A Soap Bubble And Robots
Is Michael Moore Right? Solar Energy Busted!
Think or say what you want about Michael Moore. He might be your source of trustworthy intel, or he might be not your cup of tea altogether, but he might just have been right about one thing all along. We should not be looking for more renewable ways of fuelling our ever-increasing hunger for electricity, only like we should not foster a toddler’s tantrums by giving it an endless supply of unhealthy snacks. Instead, we should provide it with a filling, nutritious meal. Here’s to feeding the world a broccoli stir-fry instead of choc chip cookies.   For those missing the analogy - you are forgiven - the clue is to use whatever energy we have wisely and find ways of dealing with it more efficiently, instead of giving in to the ever-growing thirst for expansion. Michael Moore: Planet Of The Humans Earth Day in 2020 was an event that was unfortunately somewhat overlooked as the result of another, not to be named global catastrophe. Michael Moore did not forget about it, though. He worked together with Jeff Gibbs and Ozzie Zehner on the documentary ‘Planet of the Humans.’ Despite its unfortunate launch, it has drawn quite some attention - and criticism on top of that. Why? Well, the men singled out a rather unfortunate target: renewable energy, including solar, wind, and biomass. Those sources that have often been hailed as the potential solution for global warming have fallen from grace after being uncovered as a fraud of the first order. Moore et al. are claiming that the green technologies in question do, require more fossil fuel energy for the creation of the energy than they offset. Or, in the case of biomass, generating more carbon than they save.   {youtube}                          Michael Moore Presents: Planet of the Humans | Full Documentary | Directed by Jeff Gibbs   This is a huge issue if right. It would mean that renewable energies are setting us back instead of propelling us forward. It would mean that an entire industry is built on deceit and misrepresentation. So, is it true? Michael Moore And Criticasters One thing is for sure; the green energy industry is not taking this insult lying down. They were quick to fire back and hurl accusations right back at the movie and her makers. Their general response was that it was uninformed and a real detriment to all the hard work of those working hard to push the renewables market.   Recommended:  Renewables Illusion: Solar And Wind Don’t Save Us The renewable lobbyists have done everything in their might to discredit the movie, even going so far as having it pulled from YouTube and getting it replaced by an even more dubious copyright violation claim. (Although at the time of writing (11/09/2020), it is available again.) The vehemency with which those involved protest the accuracy does not quite match up to the provided facts for this. For instance, claims are that the clips of solar panels used in the film are from a decade ago, just as other pieces of technology shown are outdated and have been improved substantially since. These arguments are meant to debunk the idea that the creation of renewable energy requires more energy than that it will eventually deliver in its lifetime.   To be fair, Moore and his friends are not the first ones floating this claim. Where there is smoke, there is fire - or so you might conclude from finding that pretty much all renewable energy proponents included this very same claim as a true/false statement on their website—obviously, pointing out that it is just a myth. Folklore. Renewable energy is profitable. Or is it? Who is right here? Is Michael Moore Right? The Calculation On Energy Offset Thankfully, it seems relatively easy to pass judgment on this matter once and for all. A quick Google search already gets you to the right sources that will provide an answer. Various of those calculate the energy consumed while building a solar panel, like this one . This source stipulates that the energy consumed in the production of a solar panel adds up to some 1373 kWh, while other sources put this number somewhere between 1200 kWh and 1400 kWh. So, 1373 kWh seems a good number. Let’s use it. Next, we have got to find out the amount of energy produced by a solar panel over its lifetime - adjusting for power output and available new technology. Simple subtraction will allow us to fact-check the claim made in ‘Planet of the Humans.’ Recommended:  Green! The New Black: Are Renewables, Renewables? Solar Energy Busted: Typical Values Energy consumed in manufacture (Emanuf)= 1373 kWh Panel power output = 300W Lifetime of a panel = 25 to 30 years Hours of power generation per day = 6 hours Total energy (Epanel) = 25years x 365days x 6hours x 300W = 16,425 kWh There you have it, a simple equation. The numbers seem irrefutable: 16,425 is always > 1373. So you will earn at least ten times the amount of energy that you put in back. Moore, Gibbs, and Zehner must have been really bad at math. It seems too simple to be true. Does it reflect the sustainability of solar panels? Is it a valid comparison of input vs. output? Or are we missing something here? Solar Energy: Sustainability The question may as well have been rhetorical. We are missing something, and it is huge. For a solar panel to be sustainable, it has to be capable of offsetting and mitigating its footprint - as the production process itself requires a lot of fossil fuel energy, which harms the environment. Simultaneously, the new energy source should also be capable of generating sufficient energy for its replacement at the end of its life. The Cerrejón open-pit mine in Columbia supplies “Blue Gem” coal, a primary source of carbon for solar silicon smelters around the world. So, a solar panel should generate enough energy to both help in mitigating the harm done to the environment and making sure that a new solar panel can be constructed at the end of its life. These actions require a steady, intermittent flow of energy - and let that be something that solar panels cannot provide just yet without using a storage device, such as a battery.   Recommended:  Renewables In Danger! Solar And Wind Energy: Start Digging Taking this factor into account makes the math somewhat more complicated: a battery allows for the creation and use of more sustainable energy, but it also poses more significant harm to the environment as its production is, once again, very harmful. First off, the additional energy requirements for manufacturing.   We already established that the solar panel required 1373 kWh, while a battery requires some 55 kWh for every 1 kWh of battery capacity, or so this paper found. For this calculation, a battery was used with the following specs: Battery Capacity = 14.5 kWh Battery usable capacity = 13.5 kWh Ebatt = 14.5 x 55 = 797 kWh There is more, though. Now, we also have to account for the harm done to the environment during the manufacturing process. Think about wasted energy and material spent. No single manufacturing process has an efficiency of 100%, with most of them at or around 30%. This means that wasted energy and materials are up to 3x the actual work of manufacturing. The Rand Carbide silicon smelting plant in South Africa is a great example of how silicon solar often just transfers pollution from the 1st to the 3rd world  Let’s put those variables in the equation, using Harm1 for the footprint of the panel itself, and Harm2 for the footprint of the battery.   Harm1 = Epanel and, Harm2 = Ebatt Total Harm to be mitigated = Harm1 + Harm2 = Totalharm Energy required for Harm mitigation = Eharm = Totalharm/Efficiency Panel replacement energy = Erepl = Epanel/Efficiency Plugging the earlier results and using an efficiency of 33%, Totalharm = 1373 kWh + 797 kWh = 2170 kWh Eharm = 2170/0.33 = 6575 kWh Erepl = 1373/0.33 = 4160 kWh So, the total amount of energy required for the production, offsetting the harm done, and providing enough energy for a replacement, is the outcome of Eharm + Erepl = Esustain Plugging in the numbers, this gives us Esustain = 6575 + 4160 = 10735 kWh Keeping in mind that an average battery only stores 13.5 kWh at a time, this means that the solar panel can only repay its ‘debt’ after many, many years of charging and discharging. During these years, it should also keep a reserve for maintenance and replacement of parts of the battery itself, something that is undoubtedly needed as it must stand up to a lot of hard work. We are not just making a solar panel to earn itself back. It has to provide energy for productive use as well, not only for repaying her debt. So, let’s say we can use 50% of the generated energy for debt repayment, and the remaining 50% for something productive. So, using 50% of a 300W solar panel to charge a 13.5 kWh battery, using only six productive power hours per day: Charge time = 13500Wh/(50% of Wdaily) = 13500/900 = 15 days After 15 days, we have a full battery. Discharging it instantly and starting back up again gives us 365/15 = 24 charging cycles per year. During those 24 cycles, we can generate 13.5 kWh x 24 cycles = 324 kWh of energy per year. As the total amount of energy required to sustain its use (Esustain) was 10735 kWh, this means that we need Esustain/324 kWh = 10735/324 = 33 years to fully cover the panel’s footprint if we use half of the energy it generates. This is the moment to gasp in shock and horror and admit that perhaps, just perhaps, Michael Moore may have been on to something. Especially knowing that the panel has a lifetime of 25 to 30 years, it should be shocking. It will take longer to recover its footprint than its lifetime. And this, mind you, assume that the panel and battery will continuously operate without breaks or breakdowns. Something that is once again pretty unlikely. So there you have it. Solar energy is busted. Unless we spent all of its generated energy on clearing its footprint - which is just pointless and does not help us get more electricity for things other than building and maintaining solar panels -, there is no way it will ever generate enough energy to sustain and expand our electricity-fuelled lifestyle.   It is never a good idea to close gaps by making new gaps. Instead of spending more energy finding new sources of energy, we should try to reduce our energy needs. That’s the only way Earth will be able to keep up with us in the long run. TL;DR: Sorry, Michael Moore haters, he is once again painfully on the money. Before you go! Recommended:  How Inexhaustible Is Earth’s Geothermal Energy Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about renewable energy? Send your writing & scribble with a photo to [email protected] , and we will write an interesting article based on your input.
Think or say what you want about Michael Moore. He might be your source of trustworthy intel, or he might be not your cup of tea altogether, but he might just have been right about one thing all along. We should not be looking for more renewable ways of fuelling our ever-increasing hunger for electricity, only like we should not foster a toddler’s tantrums by giving it an endless supply of unhealthy snacks. Instead, we should provide it with a filling, nutritious meal. Here’s to feeding the world a broccoli stir-fry instead of choc chip cookies.   For those missing the analogy - you are forgiven - the clue is to use whatever energy we have wisely and find ways of dealing with it more efficiently, instead of giving in to the ever-growing thirst for expansion. Michael Moore: Planet Of The Humans Earth Day in 2020 was an event that was unfortunately somewhat overlooked as the result of another, not to be named global catastrophe. Michael Moore did not forget about it, though. He worked together with Jeff Gibbs and Ozzie Zehner on the documentary ‘Planet of the Humans.’ Despite its unfortunate launch, it has drawn quite some attention - and criticism on top of that. Why? Well, the men singled out a rather unfortunate target: renewable energy, including solar, wind, and biomass. Those sources that have often been hailed as the potential solution for global warming have fallen from grace after being uncovered as a fraud of the first order. Moore et al. are claiming that the green technologies in question do, require more fossil fuel energy for the creation of the energy than they offset. Or, in the case of biomass, generating more carbon than they save.   {youtube}                          Michael Moore Presents: Planet of the Humans | Full Documentary | Directed by Jeff Gibbs   This is a huge issue if right. It would mean that renewable energies are setting us back instead of propelling us forward. It would mean that an entire industry is built on deceit and misrepresentation. So, is it true? Michael Moore And Criticasters One thing is for sure; the green energy industry is not taking this insult lying down. They were quick to fire back and hurl accusations right back at the movie and her makers. Their general response was that it was uninformed and a real detriment to all the hard work of those working hard to push the renewables market.   Recommended:  Renewables Illusion: Solar And Wind Don’t Save Us The renewable lobbyists have done everything in their might to discredit the movie, even going so far as having it pulled from YouTube and getting it replaced by an even more dubious copyright violation claim. (Although at the time of writing (11/09/2020), it is available again.) The vehemency with which those involved protest the accuracy does not quite match up to the provided facts for this. For instance, claims are that the clips of solar panels used in the film are from a decade ago, just as other pieces of technology shown are outdated and have been improved substantially since. These arguments are meant to debunk the idea that the creation of renewable energy requires more energy than that it will eventually deliver in its lifetime.   To be fair, Moore and his friends are not the first ones floating this claim. Where there is smoke, there is fire - or so you might conclude from finding that pretty much all renewable energy proponents included this very same claim as a true/false statement on their website—obviously, pointing out that it is just a myth. Folklore. Renewable energy is profitable. Or is it? Who is right here? Is Michael Moore Right? The Calculation On Energy Offset Thankfully, it seems relatively easy to pass judgment on this matter once and for all. A quick Google search already gets you to the right sources that will provide an answer. Various of those calculate the energy consumed while building a solar panel, like this one . This source stipulates that the energy consumed in the production of a solar panel adds up to some 1373 kWh, while other sources put this number somewhere between 1200 kWh and 1400 kWh. So, 1373 kWh seems a good number. Let’s use it. Next, we have got to find out the amount of energy produced by a solar panel over its lifetime - adjusting for power output and available new technology. Simple subtraction will allow us to fact-check the claim made in ‘Planet of the Humans.’ Recommended:  Green! The New Black: Are Renewables, Renewables? Solar Energy Busted: Typical Values Energy consumed in manufacture (Emanuf)= 1373 kWh Panel power output = 300W Lifetime of a panel = 25 to 30 years Hours of power generation per day = 6 hours Total energy (Epanel) = 25years x 365days x 6hours x 300W = 16,425 kWh There you have it, a simple equation. The numbers seem irrefutable: 16,425 is always > 1373. So you will earn at least ten times the amount of energy that you put in back. Moore, Gibbs, and Zehner must have been really bad at math. It seems too simple to be true. Does it reflect the sustainability of solar panels? Is it a valid comparison of input vs. output? Or are we missing something here? Solar Energy: Sustainability The question may as well have been rhetorical. We are missing something, and it is huge. For a solar panel to be sustainable, it has to be capable of offsetting and mitigating its footprint - as the production process itself requires a lot of fossil fuel energy, which harms the environment. Simultaneously, the new energy source should also be capable of generating sufficient energy for its replacement at the end of its life. The Cerrejón open-pit mine in Columbia supplies “Blue Gem” coal, a primary source of carbon for solar silicon smelters around the world. So, a solar panel should generate enough energy to both help in mitigating the harm done to the environment and making sure that a new solar panel can be constructed at the end of its life. These actions require a steady, intermittent flow of energy - and let that be something that solar panels cannot provide just yet without using a storage device, such as a battery.   Recommended:  Renewables In Danger! Solar And Wind Energy: Start Digging Taking this factor into account makes the math somewhat more complicated: a battery allows for the creation and use of more sustainable energy, but it also poses more significant harm to the environment as its production is, once again, very harmful. First off, the additional energy requirements for manufacturing.   We already established that the solar panel required 1373 kWh, while a battery requires some 55 kWh for every 1 kWh of battery capacity, or so this paper found. For this calculation, a battery was used with the following specs: Battery Capacity = 14.5 kWh Battery usable capacity = 13.5 kWh Ebatt = 14.5 x 55 = 797 kWh There is more, though. Now, we also have to account for the harm done to the environment during the manufacturing process. Think about wasted energy and material spent. No single manufacturing process has an efficiency of 100%, with most of them at or around 30%. This means that wasted energy and materials are up to 3x the actual work of manufacturing. The Rand Carbide silicon smelting plant in South Africa is a great example of how silicon solar often just transfers pollution from the 1st to the 3rd world  Let’s put those variables in the equation, using Harm1 for the footprint of the panel itself, and Harm2 for the footprint of the battery.   Harm1 = Epanel and, Harm2 = Ebatt Total Harm to be mitigated = Harm1 + Harm2 = Totalharm Energy required for Harm mitigation = Eharm = Totalharm/Efficiency Panel replacement energy = Erepl = Epanel/Efficiency Plugging the earlier results and using an efficiency of 33%, Totalharm = 1373 kWh + 797 kWh = 2170 kWh Eharm = 2170/0.33 = 6575 kWh Erepl = 1373/0.33 = 4160 kWh So, the total amount of energy required for the production, offsetting the harm done, and providing enough energy for a replacement, is the outcome of Eharm + Erepl = Esustain Plugging in the numbers, this gives us Esustain = 6575 + 4160 = 10735 kWh Keeping in mind that an average battery only stores 13.5 kWh at a time, this means that the solar panel can only repay its ‘debt’ after many, many years of charging and discharging. During these years, it should also keep a reserve for maintenance and replacement of parts of the battery itself, something that is undoubtedly needed as it must stand up to a lot of hard work. We are not just making a solar panel to earn itself back. It has to provide energy for productive use as well, not only for repaying her debt. So, let’s say we can use 50% of the generated energy for debt repayment, and the remaining 50% for something productive. So, using 50% of a 300W solar panel to charge a 13.5 kWh battery, using only six productive power hours per day: Charge time = 13500Wh/(50% of Wdaily) = 13500/900 = 15 days After 15 days, we have a full battery. Discharging it instantly and starting back up again gives us 365/15 = 24 charging cycles per year. During those 24 cycles, we can generate 13.5 kWh x 24 cycles = 324 kWh of energy per year. As the total amount of energy required to sustain its use (Esustain) was 10735 kWh, this means that we need Esustain/324 kWh = 10735/324 = 33 years to fully cover the panel’s footprint if we use half of the energy it generates. This is the moment to gasp in shock and horror and admit that perhaps, just perhaps, Michael Moore may have been on to something. Especially knowing that the panel has a lifetime of 25 to 30 years, it should be shocking. It will take longer to recover its footprint than its lifetime. And this, mind you, assume that the panel and battery will continuously operate without breaks or breakdowns. Something that is once again pretty unlikely. So there you have it. Solar energy is busted. Unless we spent all of its generated energy on clearing its footprint - which is just pointless and does not help us get more electricity for things other than building and maintaining solar panels -, there is no way it will ever generate enough energy to sustain and expand our electricity-fuelled lifestyle.   It is never a good idea to close gaps by making new gaps. Instead of spending more energy finding new sources of energy, we should try to reduce our energy needs. That’s the only way Earth will be able to keep up with us in the long run. TL;DR: Sorry, Michael Moore haters, he is once again painfully on the money. Before you go! Recommended:  How Inexhaustible Is Earth’s Geothermal Energy Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about renewable energy? Send your writing & scribble with a photo to [email protected] , and we will write an interesting article based on your input.
Is Michael Moore Right? Solar Energy Busted!
Is Michael Moore Right? Solar Energy Busted!
Best Foldable Solar Panels 2020 And How They Work
There are plenty of reasons why you might find yourself having to look into a foldable solar panel. Perhaps you own a mobile home or RV and are you looking to get yourself some green energy while out camping in the middle of nowhere. It would certainly make your trip a lot better if you do not have to rely on outside electricity sources.   10 Foldable Solar Panel Reviews Soon after starting your foldable solar panel search, you will find yourselves swamped with the options. They all claim to be ‘the best’ and boast ‘unique features.’ This will do the job of comparing them a lot harder. Thankfully, we are here with a buying guide. What do you have to look out for when purchasing one of those babies, and which one is best for you? We lined up ten candidates for you to choose from.   1. KINGSOLAR Portable Solar Panel Eco-friendly High efficiency Portable and lightweight Support simultaneous charging of devices Rugged durability Charging efficiency is dependent on the weather The KINGSOLAR is uniquely designed for outdoor trips, as shown by its rugged exterior. It is scratch-proof and can withstand all outside elements. It will be keeping your devices charged for when you need them the most. It is pretty affordable while boasting a high-quality standard - I dare say that its efficiency is amongst the best, with a power conversion rate of up to 23.5%.   You can charge multiple devices at the same time, using both a USB port and a DC port. Handy, especially as it is portable and lightweight, so easy to fit in your backpack for a day of hiking or fishing. The one downside would be that it is not performing so well in cloudy weather circumstances; it relies on direct sunlight exposure.   £29.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 2. ROCKPALS Foldable Solar Panel High power conversion rate 3 USB port for simultaneous charging Durable construction Waterproof design Portable and lightweight Customer support is a little hard to reach The ROCKPALS is another excellent addition to your hiking or camping gear. Its design is waterproof, making sure that it does not crash in the rain or after falling in a river. Its efficiency is top-notch, coming in at a power conversion rate of up to 23.5% - getting your devices charged quickly enough. It has 3 USB ports, which means that your family will only need one to keep going. It is foldable, making it easy to stash in your luggage, while its exterior is sturdy and durable. You can even zip it up in a protective case to make sure it is ready when you need it the most. One small downside is that the customer support center does not seem to enjoy talking to customers and are very hard to reach. Not a problem as long as ROCKPALS delivers on its potential, though. £194.35. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 3.  DOKIO 200W Solar Panel 12V Monocrystalline foldable with Inverter Charge Controller Compact and foldable Offers high charging efficiency Provides full protection for your devices Proper warrant and responsive customer service Easy to set-up The solar panel is fully waterproof The  DOKIO  is compact and foldable, making sure that your devices are protected while charging due to the built-in overcharge and overload switches. It does a great job of charging two devices at the same time. Handy if you are looking to charge both your laptop and phone. This solar panel photovoltaic packs 200W of power yet is only 2.4cm thick and weighs only 4.1kg. As it folds into a neat little suitcase, you will find it the perfect traveling companion. And if something goes wrong and it does not live up to expectations, you will be happy to see that the SUAOKI has an extensive 24-month product warranty, that the delightful and responsive customer service is glad to set you up with. One downside? It is not fully waterproof, which might be a must for the avid outdoorsman. £199.77. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 4. Renogy Foldable Solar Panel Includes charge controller High-efficiency solar panel Adjustable legs Durable construction LCD feature The product does not have a good warranty The Renogy stands in stark contrast to the previous solar panels mentioned. Let’s start with the significant downside: the warranty is not too high, which means you have to rely on it to keep on doing its job. Thankfully, the odds are in your favor when it comes to this. Renogy is a well-known name in the industry that delivers high-efficiency and durable solar panels. A huge pro is that it also functions in dim light conditions. The product is designed to last a long time, with high-quality materials used throughout for its construction. It is also immensely customer-friendly, boasting adjustable legs for getting that optimal angle, a charge controller, and an LCD feature showing the state and condition of your battery. £169.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 5.  TP-solar 60 Watt Foldable Solar Panel Charger Kit for Portable Generator Power Station Smartphones Laptop Car Boat RV Trailer 12v Battery Charging (Dual 5V USB & 18V DC Output) High conversion efficiency Has multiple USB ports for simultaneous charging Portable design for easy transport Easy to set up  Durable construction for long service life The solar panel does not come with clear instructions TP-Solar is another well-known brand in the industry. Their foldable solar panel is another high-quality, top-performance product. Its conversion rate is steady at 23%, so you can use multiple USB ports to charge your devices rapidly. After folding it, a handy handle appears, which makes it easy to carry around and bring with you on your camping trip. USB Smart Charging Technology: Dual USB Ports QC3.0 & 2.0 (5V/9V/12V 2A max), Made for smartphones and tablets You can customize the set-up any way you want. The kickstand can be adjusted to allow it to capture the maximum amount of sunlight. It does take some figuring out to get the hang of this, though, as the instructions provided are far from clear. £134.94. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 6. Bigblue Foldable Solar Panel Has a built-in ammeter Exclusive smart IC technology Rugged durability for guaranteed longevity Good warranty and reliable customer service Portable Product is not fully waterproof Bigblue provides another foldable solar panel. Its compactness and foldability make it easy to bring with you whenever you go off the grid. One of its unique features is the built-in ammeter, which means that you never have to guess second if your solar panel is being charged: the display shows exactly how much power it has received from sunlight. Another unique feature is the so-called smart IC technology.   Essentially, this smart chip detects each device and plots the best charging strategy, while protecting it from overcharging or overloading—a great extra. The Bigblue also ticks all the boxes for rugged exterior, durability, portability, and warranty. There’s just a small ‘but’: you may have to keep it away from water and rain, as its USB ports and ammeter are not water-resistant. £63.00. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 7. ECO-WORTHY Foldable Solar Panel High-efficiency solar panel Portable and ultra-lightweight Durable construction for long service life Affordable Eco-friendly This product is not weather-resistant   ECO-WORTHY boasts a 20% power output in desirable weather conditions, making it a decent choice for your foldable solar panel. Adding to this consideration, you ought to acknowledge its portability and ultra-lightweight. The dual USB ports and connector cables are easy to use and will charge any device that needs juice when you need it. While the materials used are very durable, they do not appear to be weather-resistant. If you are planning to stay outdoors in potentially bad weather, including rain, you may find that this is not the solar panel for you. The affordability and durability make up for some of this, though. £149.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 8.  ADDTOP Solar Charger 25000mAh Portable Solar Power Bank Reliable and durable Cool design Environment-friendly Foldable and moveable Budget-friendly Quality issues With the ADDTOP, you will go as green as you can. Its design and construction are environment-friendly, while the model is still foldable and fancy-looking. It weighs less than five pounds and is small enough to fit in your luggage without you even noticing that it is there. It has three panels that can easily be adjusted for optimal sunlight reception and comes with several glass attachment suction cups and two carabiners that allow you to stick it to your car window or hook it on your backpack. While other foldable solar panels often come in plain, dull blacks and greys, the ADDTOP is refreshingly popping green. Not quite so refreshing are the quality issues that have been reported, making it far from a sturdy choice. Regardless, it comes at a budget price, so you should not complain at the little hiccup here and there. £38.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 9. TWELSEAVAN 100W Solar Panel Portable Solar Charger   Ultra-compact and uber thin Heavy-duty material used for the solar panel Above-average conversion rate Smart IC chip USB port for all modern devices The TWELSEAVAN is quite the mouthful in word, yet it is decisively compact. It is super thin and small enough to fit in any bag - or to carry around using the durable rubber handle that is included. It weighs no more than 8.4 pounds and is 1 inch thick, making it an excellent gadget for hikers or outdoorsmen. The materials used are top-notch, with the back made of resilient polyester canvas and the panel created using industrial-strength PET. This combination of materials can help in withstanding even the worst of weather elements. All the while, it converts energy at a rate of 21-23 percent, which can be used to charge devices through a dual 5V and 18V USB port. The smart chip inside the USB port is capable of identifying the device and control the amount of voltage transmitted. Just be careful when carrying it around in the suitcase - it may not be waterproof. £293.60. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 10.  RAVPower UK RP-PC005(B) Solar Charger 24W Solar Panel with Triple USB Ports Above-average charging time iSmart technology Weatherproof Panels are well protected Durable Interruptions in solar charging will cause iPhone phones to stop charging; an unplug and re-plug is required Last but certainly not least. The RAVPower Solar Charger is a 24 watts solar panel with above-average charging time and a below-average size. It is super compact yet extremely powerful, providing an energy conversion of up to 23.5% on the go to two USB-ports simultaneously. Add to this the iSmart technology that automatically adjusts the optimal charging current to your devices so that no energy is wasted whatsoever, and it is easy to see why people are so excited about this one. It is well-built and reliable, with the panels well-protected and all elements fully weatherproof. The quality seems unparalleled, with a charging time that comes close to the one you may know from home. Yet there have been mentions of charging interruptions, where you have to unplug and re-plug devices to continue the charge—a small downside to an otherwise excellent device. £50.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button Who Needs A Solar Panel? If you are still left curious after this review, you may be interested in finding out more about foldable solar panels. As technology advanced, we have been able to reduce the size of the solar panels, up to the point that they are now fully portable and potentially foldable. These smaller versions do not produce nearly as much energy, but they are decent enough for a quick charge - great for people who enjoy being outdoors and who travel or hike a lot. This makes them very appealing to a target group of campers, hikers, fishers, travelers, and RV-owners. These smaller solar panels are doing the same as the larger versions perched on our homes and buildings. The photovoltaic cells capture and convert sunlight, turning it in energy. The one difference is that these are more compact. They usually come with all kinds of handy extras, including kickstands, handlebars, window sucking cups, lanyards, or carrying cases. Sturdy and rugged is another essential trait, as they need to be taken around in - sometimes - rough weather conditions. Various Solar Panel Types Foldable solar panels come in different types, just like their bigger brothers. This includes crystalline solar panels , which are popular for their higher energy efficiency and more excellent durability. These do need direct exposure to sunlight, though. Another type is the monocrystalline solar panel , made of pure silicon. They are strikingly black, heat-tolerant, and capable of performing during low-light conditions. They are also amongst the most expensive types. A third type is the polycrystalline solar panels . These have a striking blue color and a square-wafer appearance. They are only partly made of silicon, which gives them a lower energy efficiency and lower heat tolerance. On the other hand, this does mean that they are cheaper and hailing from a smoother manufacturing process. Finally, there are the thin-film solar panels . These panels combine various materials, including some cheaper ones - making them more cost-effective yet lower in power efficiency—a popular option for many who do not require a lot of electricity and a budget price. Portable Solar Panel: Advantages And Disadvantages All good and well, but why would you be using a foldable solar panel? Do you need one? Well, some distinct advantages could make them worth your money. These include: Portability. Easy to take with you! Convenience. Energy everywhere, anytime. Cost-efficiency. Save costs on electricity and gas. Eco-friendliness. Renewable energy! Ease of use. Simple and straightforward. Silent. No moving parts, thus no sound. While celebrating those pluses, one should be blind to the disadvantages, either. These will ultimately determine whether portable solar panels are something for you. Lower power efficiency. It can only power specific devices. Sun reliance. Without the sun, no electricity. Expense. Not a cheap gadget by any means.   So, if you are not bothered by the low power efficiency, need for sunlight, and relatively significant upfront investment, you just might have found yourself in the market. How To Choose A Portable Solar Panel After establishing that the pros listed above outweigh the cons for your purpose, it is time to decide which one is right for you. You have to look at three variables: its wattage, its voltage, and its size and weight.   Wattage first. This determines how many devices you can charge, and for how many hours you can charge them. A 100 watts panel should suffice for most, as it is capable of powering most devices. Only if you plan on powering larger equipment, like TVs, cookers, and fridges, you may consider a 200 or 300 watts panel.   For smaller, fewer devices - like laptops, smartphones, and tablets -, 60 watts could be enough. Are you only looking to power up something tiny, like flashlights or Android phones? Then you might be okay with the cheapest 5 watts panel. Next is the voltage. Your ideal solar panel works with the right amount of voltage for your device. There are panels available for 5V, 12V and 18V. 5V is only suitable for small appliances, like flashlights and Android phones. 12V will power up LED lights, while 18V is needed to power your laptop, tablet, and more. Finally, size and weight play an important role if you plan on taking the solar panel with you on trips. If you are going to hike or carry it around with you, otherwise, a smaller and lighter version would be recommended. Whereas for use in an RV or mobile home, a slightly bigger and heavier tablet would not be much of an issue.   Conclusion   There is no ‘favorite’ foldable solar panel, nor is there a set way of determining which is right for you. You have to keep on looking at the pros and cons while being mindful of your requirements in terms of wattage, voltage, and size and weight. Also, make sure that the disadvantages of each solar panel are not an absolute dealbreaker for you. Going fishing with a panel that is not waterproof would not be the most excellent idea. Get informed and act accordingly. That is what it is about! WhatsOrb cannot be held responsible for price changes, out-of-stock of products, and material or color differences. All information is provided by third parties. Recommended:  Tiny Houses Tips And Tricks: Minimalistic Living Experience Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about portable solar panels?  Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
There are plenty of reasons why you might find yourself having to look into a foldable solar panel. Perhaps you own a mobile home or RV and are you looking to get yourself some green energy while out camping in the middle of nowhere. It would certainly make your trip a lot better if you do not have to rely on outside electricity sources.   10 Foldable Solar Panel Reviews Soon after starting your foldable solar panel search, you will find yourselves swamped with the options. They all claim to be ‘the best’ and boast ‘unique features.’ This will do the job of comparing them a lot harder. Thankfully, we are here with a buying guide. What do you have to look out for when purchasing one of those babies, and which one is best for you? We lined up ten candidates for you to choose from.   1. KINGSOLAR Portable Solar Panel Eco-friendly High efficiency Portable and lightweight Support simultaneous charging of devices Rugged durability Charging efficiency is dependent on the weather The KINGSOLAR is uniquely designed for outdoor trips, as shown by its rugged exterior. It is scratch-proof and can withstand all outside elements. It will be keeping your devices charged for when you need them the most. It is pretty affordable while boasting a high-quality standard - I dare say that its efficiency is amongst the best, with a power conversion rate of up to 23.5%.   You can charge multiple devices at the same time, using both a USB port and a DC port. Handy, especially as it is portable and lightweight, so easy to fit in your backpack for a day of hiking or fishing. The one downside would be that it is not performing so well in cloudy weather circumstances; it relies on direct sunlight exposure.   £29.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 2. ROCKPALS Foldable Solar Panel High power conversion rate 3 USB port for simultaneous charging Durable construction Waterproof design Portable and lightweight Customer support is a little hard to reach The ROCKPALS is another excellent addition to your hiking or camping gear. Its design is waterproof, making sure that it does not crash in the rain or after falling in a river. Its efficiency is top-notch, coming in at a power conversion rate of up to 23.5% - getting your devices charged quickly enough. It has 3 USB ports, which means that your family will only need one to keep going. It is foldable, making it easy to stash in your luggage, while its exterior is sturdy and durable. You can even zip it up in a protective case to make sure it is ready when you need it the most. One small downside is that the customer support center does not seem to enjoy talking to customers and are very hard to reach. Not a problem as long as ROCKPALS delivers on its potential, though. £194.35. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 3.  DOKIO 200W Solar Panel 12V Monocrystalline foldable with Inverter Charge Controller Compact and foldable Offers high charging efficiency Provides full protection for your devices Proper warrant and responsive customer service Easy to set-up The solar panel is fully waterproof The  DOKIO  is compact and foldable, making sure that your devices are protected while charging due to the built-in overcharge and overload switches. It does a great job of charging two devices at the same time. Handy if you are looking to charge both your laptop and phone. This solar panel photovoltaic packs 200W of power yet is only 2.4cm thick and weighs only 4.1kg. As it folds into a neat little suitcase, you will find it the perfect traveling companion. And if something goes wrong and it does not live up to expectations, you will be happy to see that the SUAOKI has an extensive 24-month product warranty, that the delightful and responsive customer service is glad to set you up with. One downside? It is not fully waterproof, which might be a must for the avid outdoorsman. £199.77. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 4. Renogy Foldable Solar Panel Includes charge controller High-efficiency solar panel Adjustable legs Durable construction LCD feature The product does not have a good warranty The Renogy stands in stark contrast to the previous solar panels mentioned. Let’s start with the significant downside: the warranty is not too high, which means you have to rely on it to keep on doing its job. Thankfully, the odds are in your favor when it comes to this. Renogy is a well-known name in the industry that delivers high-efficiency and durable solar panels. A huge pro is that it also functions in dim light conditions. The product is designed to last a long time, with high-quality materials used throughout for its construction. It is also immensely customer-friendly, boasting adjustable legs for getting that optimal angle, a charge controller, and an LCD feature showing the state and condition of your battery. £169.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 5.  TP-solar 60 Watt Foldable Solar Panel Charger Kit for Portable Generator Power Station Smartphones Laptop Car Boat RV Trailer 12v Battery Charging (Dual 5V USB & 18V DC Output) High conversion efficiency Has multiple USB ports for simultaneous charging Portable design for easy transport Easy to set up  Durable construction for long service life The solar panel does not come with clear instructions TP-Solar is another well-known brand in the industry. Their foldable solar panel is another high-quality, top-performance product. Its conversion rate is steady at 23%, so you can use multiple USB ports to charge your devices rapidly. After folding it, a handy handle appears, which makes it easy to carry around and bring with you on your camping trip. USB Smart Charging Technology: Dual USB Ports QC3.0 & 2.0 (5V/9V/12V 2A max), Made for smartphones and tablets You can customize the set-up any way you want. The kickstand can be adjusted to allow it to capture the maximum amount of sunlight. It does take some figuring out to get the hang of this, though, as the instructions provided are far from clear. £134.94. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 6. Bigblue Foldable Solar Panel Has a built-in ammeter Exclusive smart IC technology Rugged durability for guaranteed longevity Good warranty and reliable customer service Portable Product is not fully waterproof Bigblue provides another foldable solar panel. Its compactness and foldability make it easy to bring with you whenever you go off the grid. One of its unique features is the built-in ammeter, which means that you never have to guess second if your solar panel is being charged: the display shows exactly how much power it has received from sunlight. Another unique feature is the so-called smart IC technology.   Essentially, this smart chip detects each device and plots the best charging strategy, while protecting it from overcharging or overloading—a great extra. The Bigblue also ticks all the boxes for rugged exterior, durability, portability, and warranty. There’s just a small ‘but’: you may have to keep it away from water and rain, as its USB ports and ammeter are not water-resistant. £63.00. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 7. ECO-WORTHY Foldable Solar Panel High-efficiency solar panel Portable and ultra-lightweight Durable construction for long service life Affordable Eco-friendly This product is not weather-resistant   ECO-WORTHY boasts a 20% power output in desirable weather conditions, making it a decent choice for your foldable solar panel. Adding to this consideration, you ought to acknowledge its portability and ultra-lightweight. The dual USB ports and connector cables are easy to use and will charge any device that needs juice when you need it. While the materials used are very durable, they do not appear to be weather-resistant. If you are planning to stay outdoors in potentially bad weather, including rain, you may find that this is not the solar panel for you. The affordability and durability make up for some of this, though. £149.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 8.  ADDTOP Solar Charger 25000mAh Portable Solar Power Bank Reliable and durable Cool design Environment-friendly Foldable and moveable Budget-friendly Quality issues With the ADDTOP, you will go as green as you can. Its design and construction are environment-friendly, while the model is still foldable and fancy-looking. It weighs less than five pounds and is small enough to fit in your luggage without you even noticing that it is there. It has three panels that can easily be adjusted for optimal sunlight reception and comes with several glass attachment suction cups and two carabiners that allow you to stick it to your car window or hook it on your backpack. While other foldable solar panels often come in plain, dull blacks and greys, the ADDTOP is refreshingly popping green. Not quite so refreshing are the quality issues that have been reported, making it far from a sturdy choice. Regardless, it comes at a budget price, so you should not complain at the little hiccup here and there. £38.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 9. TWELSEAVAN 100W Solar Panel Portable Solar Charger   Ultra-compact and uber thin Heavy-duty material used for the solar panel Above-average conversion rate Smart IC chip USB port for all modern devices The TWELSEAVAN is quite the mouthful in word, yet it is decisively compact. It is super thin and small enough to fit in any bag - or to carry around using the durable rubber handle that is included. It weighs no more than 8.4 pounds and is 1 inch thick, making it an excellent gadget for hikers or outdoorsmen. The materials used are top-notch, with the back made of resilient polyester canvas and the panel created using industrial-strength PET. This combination of materials can help in withstanding even the worst of weather elements. All the while, it converts energy at a rate of 21-23 percent, which can be used to charge devices through a dual 5V and 18V USB port. The smart chip inside the USB port is capable of identifying the device and control the amount of voltage transmitted. Just be careful when carrying it around in the suitcase - it may not be waterproof. £293.60. To purchase, please click on the shopping button 10.  RAVPower UK RP-PC005(B) Solar Charger 24W Solar Panel with Triple USB Ports Above-average charging time iSmart technology Weatherproof Panels are well protected Durable Interruptions in solar charging will cause iPhone phones to stop charging; an unplug and re-plug is required Last but certainly not least. The RAVPower Solar Charger is a 24 watts solar panel with above-average charging time and a below-average size. It is super compact yet extremely powerful, providing an energy conversion of up to 23.5% on the go to two USB-ports simultaneously. Add to this the iSmart technology that automatically adjusts the optimal charging current to your devices so that no energy is wasted whatsoever, and it is easy to see why people are so excited about this one. It is well-built and reliable, with the panels well-protected and all elements fully weatherproof. The quality seems unparalleled, with a charging time that comes close to the one you may know from home. Yet there have been mentions of charging interruptions, where you have to unplug and re-plug devices to continue the charge—a small downside to an otherwise excellent device. £50.99. To purchase, please click on the shopping button Who Needs A Solar Panel? If you are still left curious after this review, you may be interested in finding out more about foldable solar panels. As technology advanced, we have been able to reduce the size of the solar panels, up to the point that they are now fully portable and potentially foldable. These smaller versions do not produce nearly as much energy, but they are decent enough for a quick charge - great for people who enjoy being outdoors and who travel or hike a lot. This makes them very appealing to a target group of campers, hikers, fishers, travelers, and RV-owners. These smaller solar panels are doing the same as the larger versions perched on our homes and buildings. The photovoltaic cells capture and convert sunlight, turning it in energy. The one difference is that these are more compact. They usually come with all kinds of handy extras, including kickstands, handlebars, window sucking cups, lanyards, or carrying cases. Sturdy and rugged is another essential trait, as they need to be taken around in - sometimes - rough weather conditions. Various Solar Panel Types Foldable solar panels come in different types, just like their bigger brothers. This includes crystalline solar panels , which are popular for their higher energy efficiency and more excellent durability. These do need direct exposure to sunlight, though. Another type is the monocrystalline solar panel , made of pure silicon. They are strikingly black, heat-tolerant, and capable of performing during low-light conditions. They are also amongst the most expensive types. A third type is the polycrystalline solar panels . These have a striking blue color and a square-wafer appearance. They are only partly made of silicon, which gives them a lower energy efficiency and lower heat tolerance. On the other hand, this does mean that they are cheaper and hailing from a smoother manufacturing process. Finally, there are the thin-film solar panels . These panels combine various materials, including some cheaper ones - making them more cost-effective yet lower in power efficiency—a popular option for many who do not require a lot of electricity and a budget price. Portable Solar Panel: Advantages And Disadvantages All good and well, but why would you be using a foldable solar panel? Do you need one? Well, some distinct advantages could make them worth your money. These include: Portability. Easy to take with you! Convenience. Energy everywhere, anytime. Cost-efficiency. Save costs on electricity and gas. Eco-friendliness. Renewable energy! Ease of use. Simple and straightforward. Silent. No moving parts, thus no sound. While celebrating those pluses, one should be blind to the disadvantages, either. These will ultimately determine whether portable solar panels are something for you. Lower power efficiency. It can only power specific devices. Sun reliance. Without the sun, no electricity. Expense. Not a cheap gadget by any means.   So, if you are not bothered by the low power efficiency, need for sunlight, and relatively significant upfront investment, you just might have found yourself in the market. How To Choose A Portable Solar Panel After establishing that the pros listed above outweigh the cons for your purpose, it is time to decide which one is right for you. You have to look at three variables: its wattage, its voltage, and its size and weight.   Wattage first. This determines how many devices you can charge, and for how many hours you can charge them. A 100 watts panel should suffice for most, as it is capable of powering most devices. Only if you plan on powering larger equipment, like TVs, cookers, and fridges, you may consider a 200 or 300 watts panel.   For smaller, fewer devices - like laptops, smartphones, and tablets -, 60 watts could be enough. Are you only looking to power up something tiny, like flashlights or Android phones? Then you might be okay with the cheapest 5 watts panel. Next is the voltage. Your ideal solar panel works with the right amount of voltage for your device. There are panels available for 5V, 12V and 18V. 5V is only suitable for small appliances, like flashlights and Android phones. 12V will power up LED lights, while 18V is needed to power your laptop, tablet, and more. Finally, size and weight play an important role if you plan on taking the solar panel with you on trips. If you are going to hike or carry it around with you, otherwise, a smaller and lighter version would be recommended. Whereas for use in an RV or mobile home, a slightly bigger and heavier tablet would not be much of an issue.   Conclusion   There is no ‘favorite’ foldable solar panel, nor is there a set way of determining which is right for you. You have to keep on looking at the pros and cons while being mindful of your requirements in terms of wattage, voltage, and size and weight. Also, make sure that the disadvantages of each solar panel are not an absolute dealbreaker for you. Going fishing with a panel that is not waterproof would not be the most excellent idea. Get informed and act accordingly. That is what it is about! WhatsOrb cannot be held responsible for price changes, out-of-stock of products, and material or color differences. All information is provided by third parties. Recommended:  Tiny Houses Tips And Tricks: Minimalistic Living Experience Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about portable solar panels?  Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Best Foldable Solar Panels 2020 And How They Work
Best Foldable Solar Panels 2020 And How They Work
Sustainable Eco Home: Hemp, Solar And Off Grid
Completely off-grid? A project in Marocco combines hemp and solar to make an innovative eco-building. There is a team of various organizations that completed the construction of a pioneering eco-building in Morocco. The structure is made of hemp with a high-tech solar energy system. You will not need electricity for this residence. Sustainable Eco Home: Competition The residence is built as a single-family home to be a participant in the 'Solar Decathlon,' organized by the United States Department of Energy and Morocco's Centre de recherche en Energie Solaire et Energies Nouvelles. This competition takes place every two years and challenges students to create solar-powered buildings. The most recent edition was on the African continent, in Ben Guerir, Marocco. Eco Home: Advanced ‘spaceship.’ The residence looks like a spaceship. Monika Brümmer, a German architect and natural builder, was the leader of the project. The challenge was to make a hemp composite with the use of vegetable bio-resins, where technical or synthetic components are avoided, according to Brümmer. The building is circular and has 24 exterior panels. This will give interior comfort because of the optimal damping and thermal phase shift and through the osmosis of the components in the hemp concrete formula. {youtube}                                                         Hemp houses could be greener, fire-resistant. Hemp Meets High-tech The SUNIMPLANT was built for around $120,000, a lot cheaper than most of the buildings in the competition. The residence of 90 square meters has the following additional features: A double layer. It is made of a mixture of earth, hemp, pozzolan, and lime. These products are all produced locally. The exterior is spherical and aerodynamic. It has 24 semi-flexible photovoltaic panels, sponsored by DAS-Energy. There are curve bio-composite panels. They are made from hemp wool, which improves the performance of the photovoltaic panels by covering their backs against the weather extremes of the semi-arid area of Ben Guerir, where temperatures hit 42°-46°C (107°- 114°F) in the shade during the construction phase last August and September. High-quality glass from the French glass manufacturer Saint Gobain. Recommended:  A Tiny House Shaped As The Lunar-Lander: Australia Recommended:  Hemp: High-Performance Stuff For Buildings, Fashion, Health Sustainable Eco Home: International Cooperation Unfortunately, they were dealing with funding restrictions. Otherwise, they could have delivered more exceptional performance, according to Brümmer. The original plans for the construction were to install hemp-clay boards and internal dividing walls and floors. Adrar Nouh participated in the architectural design, designed the hemp materials, and contributed to the construction of the building. Other contributors to the SUNIMPLANT project were the Moroccan National School of Architecture and the National School of Applied Sciences, both located in Tetouan, Morocco, and the German Fraunhofer Center for Silicon Photovoltaics. Recommended:  Tiny Houses Tips And Tricks: Minimalistic Living Experience Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about your off-grid house?  Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Completely off-grid? A project in Marocco combines hemp and solar to make an innovative eco-building. There is a team of various organizations that completed the construction of a pioneering eco-building in Morocco. The structure is made of hemp with a high-tech solar energy system. You will not need electricity for this residence. Sustainable Eco Home: Competition The residence is built as a single-family home to be a participant in the 'Solar Decathlon,' organized by the United States Department of Energy and Morocco's Centre de recherche en Energie Solaire et Energies Nouvelles. This competition takes place every two years and challenges students to create solar-powered buildings. The most recent edition was on the African continent, in Ben Guerir, Marocco. Eco Home: Advanced ‘spaceship.’ The residence looks like a spaceship. Monika Brümmer, a German architect and natural builder, was the leader of the project. The challenge was to make a hemp composite with the use of vegetable bio-resins, where technical or synthetic components are avoided, according to Brümmer. The building is circular and has 24 exterior panels. This will give interior comfort because of the optimal damping and thermal phase shift and through the osmosis of the components in the hemp concrete formula. {youtube}                                                         Hemp houses could be greener, fire-resistant. Hemp Meets High-tech The SUNIMPLANT was built for around $120,000, a lot cheaper than most of the buildings in the competition. The residence of 90 square meters has the following additional features: A double layer. It is made of a mixture of earth, hemp, pozzolan, and lime. These products are all produced locally. The exterior is spherical and aerodynamic. It has 24 semi-flexible photovoltaic panels, sponsored by DAS-Energy. There are curve bio-composite panels. They are made from hemp wool, which improves the performance of the photovoltaic panels by covering their backs against the weather extremes of the semi-arid area of Ben Guerir, where temperatures hit 42°-46°C (107°- 114°F) in the shade during the construction phase last August and September. High-quality glass from the French glass manufacturer Saint Gobain. Recommended:  A Tiny House Shaped As The Lunar-Lander: Australia Recommended:  Hemp: High-Performance Stuff For Buildings, Fashion, Health Sustainable Eco Home: International Cooperation Unfortunately, they were dealing with funding restrictions. Otherwise, they could have delivered more exceptional performance, according to Brümmer. The original plans for the construction were to install hemp-clay boards and internal dividing walls and floors. Adrar Nouh participated in the architectural design, designed the hemp materials, and contributed to the construction of the building. Other contributors to the SUNIMPLANT project were the Moroccan National School of Architecture and the National School of Applied Sciences, both located in Tetouan, Morocco, and the German Fraunhofer Center for Silicon Photovoltaics. Recommended:  Tiny Houses Tips And Tricks: Minimalistic Living Experience Did you find this an interesting article, or do you have a question or remark? Leave a comment below. We try to respond the same day. Like to write your article about your off-grid house?  Click on  'Register'  or push the button 'Write An Article' on the  'HomePage.'
Sustainable Eco Home: Hemp, Solar And Off Grid
Sustainable Eco Home: Hemp, Solar And Off Grid
Energy

Nowadays, you can find everywhere solar panels. On roofs, cars, bikes, trailers, and even floating on water. But how do they work, and how is it used?

Solar Energy: How Does It Work?

  • To generate solar energy, the photons radiated from the sun to earth must be collected, converted into a usable format, and then delivered to an electronic device or the electric grid.
  • An inverter is used to convert the electricity from the photovoltaic array into a format that can power most devices and make sure the voltage level is consistent.
  • Finally, the power can be supplied to the electrical grid or directly to a home, business, or other location for immediate use. Also, some systems can move the array of cells, so they remain in the best position to collect solar energy.

Photovoltaic Arrays

Photovoltaic (PV) arrays are groups of PV cells connected to supply more energy than a single cell could provide. PV cells are made from specially treated silicon made, so the material has a positive side and a negative side, allowing it to transmit electricity. The cell is then attached to several other cells using metal connectors; that group of cells is connected to a frame for support, making a PV module. The modules are connected to create a PV array with a single electrical output connected to the rest of the system.

Inverters

The solar energy generated by the PV array is direct current (DC) electricity, which cannot be used by many electronic devices or returned to the electrical grid because they use alternating current (AC) power. Also, solar arrays do not generate a consistent amount of energy because of variations in light hitting the PV cells.

The inverter and transformer correct these issues by modifying the amount and type of electrical power supplied by the system. The inverter converts DC power into AC power that can be used by other electric systems and ensures the voltage level delivered by the system is constant.

Photovoltaic Array Controllers

Since the amount of energy generated by PV cells is directly related to the amount of sunlight hitting them, the output from a solar energy system is impacted by the position of the PV array concerning the sun. To maximize the efficiency of the generation system, a solar tracker and array controllers can be used. The solar tracker will follow the position of the sun by using light sensors; the controllers can move the PV arrays based on the output from the solar tracker, ensuring that the highest possible amount of solar energy is generated.

Delivering Solar Energy

Once the electricity generated by the PV array has been converted into a usable format, it can be used to electrical power devices. The solar energy generation system can be installed, so power is delivered directly to any electrical appliances it is attached to or connected in parallel with the electrical grid.

Before you go!

Recommended: Solar Space Farms: Next Step In Renewable Energy

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