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Solar Stirling Technology

Improving Solar Thermal Technology PARTEQ, Queens University

Solar thermal technology is essentially using the suns radiation to heat water. It's different than photovoltaic technology which uses the sun's radiation and converts it to electricity. Solar thermal, or solar heating, is a much more efficient use of the sun's radiation because we can capture more of it and turn it into heat much easier than the photovoltaic process. Stagnation, or overheating, is a very big problem. Because when systems are functioning normally, when you're using the hot water, then the system works exceptionally well. But when you stop, when for example you go on vacation and your home is not using any.

Hot water, systems can reach temperature of 200 to 220 degrees celcius. Solutions for this are people climbing on their roofs and putting blankets over their solar systems, or over their solar panels, to prevent this from happening. There's definitely been a detriment to the overall commercialization of solar thermal due to overheating and stagnation. The ISC or Integral Stagnation Control technology, is passive, which means it uses no additional power, it does not affect the overall size of the solar thermal collector, and it requires very little maintenance. So what we've done is that we've just added another channel, or gap, behind the absorber,.

Which allows ambient air, or surrounding air, to vent through the solar collector housing itself, and thereby removing the excess heat from the absorber, and rejecting it to the surrounding environment. It uses a passive alloy element, which reacts to temperature. When the interior of the solar collector reaches the control point, it opens the damper assembly, and then that allows air to vent through the collector. A surprisingly simple technology, surprisingly difficult to implement in a reliable, costeffective way. The great thing about this technology is that it will not only save consumers money, but.

First Optical Rectenna Converts Light to DC Current

The optical rectenna, you could think of it as like a radio antenna, only for the sun. It's working off of very similar principles, where we instead have very tiny antenna that match the size of the energy coming from the sun or visible light. And when that energy is coupled into the antenna, then another device is used to extract the energy and turn it into electricity. So making a rectenna is actually a pretty simple process, which was part of the beauty of the discovery. You basically take any type of conductive substrate,.

And we can grow these carbon nanotubes like a carpet vertical off the substrate. We grow our nanotube. We can formally coat them with something that is an electrical insulator, then we deposit another layer of metal on top to create a socalled metal insulator or metal diode structure. And so that diode structure is important, because it's the fastest diode in the world. And it's the only diode that's fast enough to open and close the gate at the speed of solar energy oscillating in an antenna. What gets me excited today is that we've done it.

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,.


This solar toy car is a ready made chinese toy. it is difficult to make it because it is difficult to find small solar panels. but it is a very nice toy. you can see these 4 wheels down below. these actually do not do much. it is actually powered by this middle wheel.this middle wheel is driven by a motor which runs on solar panels. if you put it on a board out in the sun, the car strikes the boundary and then turns and moves on. if you place your hand on top of the car, sunlight is cut and stops producing electricity.

Satellite dish solar cooker cooking sausage

Alright, today I'm going to do another test of my parabolic cooker. In my last tutorial that I did about this I mentioned that I needed to use a different method of mounting the pan. So today I'm using my camera tripod to do that and I think it's going to work out just fine Today I'm gonna cook some Italian sausage along with some peppers and onions so I'm gonna go ahead and put it on the tripod and see how long it takes one thing I was concerned about is how much sun this tripod would block but.

I see it's gonna work out pretty well There's a little bit blocked right here and also there's a shadow here cast by the leg and then a little shadow back here that comes from the pan The reason this works out pretty good is that these satellite dishes are not perfect parabolic shape. they actually. the satellite signal would normally come in from what is the top of the dish and bounce back toward the bottom of the dish where the receiver is at and so because of that I have this thing pointing straight up but sun is actually at a.

Slight angle so it can come in here between the legs of the tripod without getting blocked and then it can bounce up here to the pan which can be off center a little bit, so I think this is actually going to work out well for use with the tripod. Alright, the food has been in there about ten minutes and I see the lid of the pan is steamed up a little bit so I want to go ahead and open it up stir it around a little bit.

Light Guide Solar Concentrators

Greg Schmidt Our group has developed light guide solar concentrators. Now these work by collecting the solar incident light on the surface and concentrating it all to come out along a single edge of the device this particular one is a prototype that achieves about sixty times concentration and at this edge is where you can place a solar cell. What you're looking at is the microstructures that redirect all the light out to one side to the guide. So the focused light hits that small triangle and then gets redirected like a mirror aimed at the solar cell.

So, you can see it right now its misaligned. So most of the light actually passes straight through the guide and onto my hand. Now, when I get it came just at the sun you can see all the light is coming out the edge of the guide and the shadow is dark now so you can see instead of the light passing through the system. It's getting directed to come out right where you would have your solar cell. I t's really designed for high efficiency solar cells that operate around 36.

Desert Solar Power for US Europe. Transmission over long distances. Energy keynote speaker

Generation, yes we can talk about wind turbines. We can talk about solar energy. You know, one of the most exciting things abouts the new technology coming is that we have the ability to take power up to 4 thousand kilometres from where it was made, to where it will be consumed. This is new. We can do it with almost zero power loss. Using technology from Siemens and other companies. This means that we can build solar generators in the Sahara Desert, to power Moscow, or Madrid, or the whole of Turkey. We will only need an area of the Sahara,.

200 kilometres by 40 kilometres in size, covered with mirrors, each mirror computercontrolled, shining its power onto a gas turbine. We only need that size to power the whole of Europe. So, we are in an extraordinary place. At the same time we're seeing, of course the acceleration of funds available to drive these things through carbon trading and in each of these, I see a parallel coming in water, which I'll come back to in a moment. Certainly, I do in the political sphere. We've seen tribalism in energy supply.

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