Plants vs Solar Panels Which is better at capturing solar energy AtBristol Science Centre
This is an aquatic plant called pondweed, and we can see that it's making tiny bubbles of gas. This gas is oxygen and all plants produce it in a process called photosynthesis. The word photosynthesis comes from the Greek meaning light' and putting together'. Plants use the energy in sunlight to make sugars, out of the simple ingredients of carbon dioxide and water. And do you remember those bubbles of gas we saw earlier Well. deep breath they're pretty useful. To make the sugar, or glucose, the bonds which hold the molecules together.
Have to be broken apart and rearranged. The bonds are made of electrons. So the water needs to lose electrons, and the carbon dioxide has to gain electrons. And the colour of leaves gives us a clue to what is responsible for this rearrangement of electrons. Every leaf cell contains a pigment called chlorophyll'. It's the chlorophyll which makes the leaves green and helps make photosynthesis happen. Chlorophyll has the amazing ability to release electrons when exposed to sunlight. The electrons from the chlorophyll are replaced by splitting apart water into ions of hydrogen and oxygen.
The excess oxygen is then released into the air. The flow of electrons from the chlorophyll is then used with the remaining hydrogen ions to produce the energy needed to synthesise glucose from molecules of carbon dioxide. So sunlight provides the energy we need to move electrons from one molecule to another turning light energy into chemical energy ready for our plant to use. But can we do the same thing artificially How does photosynthesis compare to a solar panel Well, solar panels like those on the Energy Tree.
Use light as an energy source, and they also generate a flow of electrons. But they don't store chemical energy they convert light energy into electrical energy. They do this by using something called the photoelectric effect'. When photons come and hit a metal surface, they knock off electrons. We then capture and store these electrons. These photovoltaic cells are made of a silicon crystal. But silicon is a poor conductor of electricity. So impurities are added to help. This creates something called a 'semiconductor'. As light hits the surface, electrons are knocked loose.
The electrons then flow from areas with a high concentration, to areas with a low concentration. It's this flow of electrons which generates an electric current. We've done this on a big scale on our roof. We have 560 square metres of solar panels, which generate 47,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. So which is better, leaves or solar panels How efficient is each system at transforming the energy from sunlight Well, a leaf can turn only three percent of light energy hitting its surface into chemical energy through photosynthesis.
Whereas, a solar panel of the same area can turn roughly ten percent of the light energy into electrical energy that's over three times more efficient! But it's not quite as simple as that. There's all sorts of other things to take into account as well. Such as the time of day, the location, types of plant, and transport and storage costs on the other side as well. Solar panels may be able to absorb more wavelengths of light than leaves, but leaves can grow and repair when damaged. The Energy Tree may be able to charge your phone,.
Korea to push adoption of consumer solar panels
The Korean government has announced a pilot program that it hopes will boost the demand for consumer solar power, as well as relieve the burden on the nation's strained power grid. Our Paul Yi explains how this solar panel leasing system works. and how much households can save by becoming early adopters. This apartment building in Korea is being outfitted with a solar panel which independently generates household electricity allyear round. The central government hopes it's a trend that will catch on with mainstream consumers nationwide. The energy ministry recently introduced a new project to promote solar power by allowing.
Households to sidestep the initial high costs and bring a steady stream of revenue to power companies. A specialized company will provide an allinclusive installation, where users pay a certain rental amount. This is the type of business structure that we are proposing. According to the ministry, a single consumer solar panel is able to produce three kilowatts of electricity, which amounts to an average of 285 kilowatts per hour every month. That's over half the electricity an average household in Korea consumes in a single month. When looking at the economics of the program, it provides considerable savings to your energy.
Bill. Average households in Korea pay about 150 U.S. dollars per month for electricity, but using a solar panel slashes that utility fee by up to 82 percent. Even factoring in the monthly rental cost and maintenance of the solar panel, officials say consumers stand to save up to 30 percent per month in power fees. The government also plans to provide incentives for companies who participate and invest in the pilot project. Local private firms, however, are taking a cautious stance due to a lack of demand in the Korean solar market.
Utility companies seek to cut discounts for solar energy consumers
POSITION AS A POLICE OFFICER. TO COERCE AT LEAST 5 WOMEN TO HAVE SEX WITH HIM DURING A 2YEAR SPAN. GULSTAN IT'S ONE OF THE HOTTEST INDUSTRIES IN CALIFORNIA. BUT SOLAR POWER SUPPORTERS CLAIM THEY'RE ABOUT TO BE SHORTCHANGED BY CALIFORNIA'S PUBLIC UTILITIES. KCRA 3'S MIKE LUERY IS LIVE IN SACRAMENTO'S NATOMAS NEIGHBORHOOD TO SHOW US WHAT THE FIGHTING IS ALL ABOUT. MIKE IT'S ALL ABOUT MONEY. TAKE A LOOK BEHIND ME AND YOU CAN JUST HOW POPULAR ROOFTOP SOLAR PANELS ARE IN THIS NEIGHBORHOOD. BUT UTILITIES ARE LOOKING TO CUT.
BACK ON THE DISCOUNTS THEY PROVIDE FOR THE ENERGY YOU GENERATE. I CAN TURN THE SAVINGS ON. REPORTER SEAN MILLNER HAS SAVED A BUNDLE ON HIS ELECTRIC HILL. IT IS TIME TO GO SOLAR. $20. $19. MUCH BETTER. REPORTER SAVINGS ARE LOCKED IN BUT OTHERS MAY NOT BE SO LUCKY. DOZENS OF SOLAR ADVOCATES PROTESTED. THEY ARE CONCERNED SOLAR SAVINGS COULD GO DARK IF UTILITY COMPANIES GET THEIR WAY. THEY WANT TO MAKE SOLAR MORE EXPENSIVE THAN IT IS TODAY. THE INDUSTRY SAYS 400,000 PEOPLE HAVE SOLAR PANELS ON THEIR HOMES, SCHOOLS, OR BUSINESSES.
WE WANT SOLAR TO CONTINUE. FARMERS ARE PUTTING A LOT OF SOLAR IN. IT MADE IT FINANCIALLY POSSIBLE TO PUT IN OUR OWN. REPORTER THE SUBSIDIES MAKE IT MORE EXPENSIVE FOR THOSE WITHOUT PANELS. UTILITIES WANT TO CUT THE DISCOUNT THEY GIVE TO CUSTOMERS. THEY ARE 100 COMMITTED. SOLAR IS PART OF THE CLEAN ENERGY FUTURE. WE ARE LOOKING FOR A WAY TO WORK WITH EVERYBODY TO MAKE IT A SUSTAINABLE GROWTH PATTERN. REPORTER THEY ARE GETTING PLENTY OF FEEDBACK FROM CONSUMERS AND UTILITIES. OVER THE ISSUE OF HOW MUCH ROOFTOP SOLAR CUSTOMER SHOULD BE.
SOLAR IN THE TAR SANDS Indigenous community launches solar powered health centre
The Lubicon Cree have been here since time immemorial. Indigenous people have a very intimate connection with our homelands here, in northern Alberta. And what we've seen instead is Industry coming in and taking over our lands and really exploiting them. It's had a detrimental impact. We see companies digging down into the earth, trying to extract the very last drops of oil. But instead, we can start looking up. We're bathing in sunlight all around us and we're not utilizing that energy. And so that's why our community has decided to install solar.
We've got a state of the art system going in here. I think it's really important that we take this project next level. Essentially 20.8 kilowatt capacity is what this will end up becoming. Which will connect in through the health center but which will feed the whole community in terms of energy. That's 80 panels, are going to go on top of these polls. We're very deliberate about this because we want it to be something that's still very much a central site in this community, that people will see.
It will welcome visitors and people will be reminded of it every day. We wanted to retain the land use potential. It's something that's going to be in the community, behind us, for at least 50 years. It's pretty amazing to see this project go up. A lot of the community members, the young people are working and getting hands on training right now. It's really amazing to see how, proud people are of it, and how it's a community project because all of this has been through the blood sweat and tears of the community.
This project matters to us because it represents who we are and where we are going in the future. When you see the work I can say that I did that, I took part and I did it right. So there will be a lot of people seeing it every day, and I can tell people I worked on this. Heh. I know that in a lot of the ceremonies and the songs, the sun is praised. Even the project name, Pitapan, means the coming of the dawn , and it's the coming of a new era.
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