The big question with regard to solar energy is whether it can reliably replace fossil fuels as a major power source in the future, and this question is not easy to answer. Of the many criticisms that can be raised, two major issues are often levied against solar energy: the first is intermittency – the fact that the available sunlight at a given moment is insufficient to generate power; and the second is cost – the price of producing or installing the solar cells can counteract the money saved on using them in the first place. These new developments don’t necessarily solve all of the problems that can be associated with solar energy, they are addressing the larger, more frequent criticism of it; and, in so doing, they are helping to establish that solar energy isn’t a niche thing but a practical and desirable alternative to fossil-fuel energy.
Posts Tagged ‘solar technology’
Political and economic developments certainly gave renewed purpose to the ASES conference as speaker after speaker hailed the resurgent interest in solar energy and exhorted the participants to redouble their efforts to take advantage of this unique combination of events. There has never been a better chance to integrate solar technology into the mainstream of energy generation not only in the U.S. but also in other countries throughout the world. Solar energy can make a significant contribution to reducing our dependence on fossil fuels. I have summarized some of the themes of the conference and in the months ahead SolarTown will revisit some of these issues in the Learning and Community sections of our site.