- By Amanda Pelligra
- Published 02/10/2012
Solar energy has been used by humans for thousands of years. For example, ancient cultures used energy from the sun to keep warm by starting fires with it. They also kept their homes warm through passive solar energy designs. Buildings were designed so that walls and floors collected solar heat during the day that was released at night to keep them warm. If you have ever stood in the sun to get warm then you too have utilized solar thermal energy. The discovery of photovoltaics happened in 1839 when the French physicist Edmond Becquerel first showed photovoltaic activity. Edmond had found that electrical current in certain materials could be increased when exposed to light. The first long-term practical application of PV cells was in satellite systems. The solar power system was so successful that PV’s have been a part of world-wide satellite space programs ever since. The sun provides endless non polluting energy to the satellite power systems and demand for solar cells has risen as a result of the telecommunications revolution and need for satellites.
The energy crisis and oil embargos of the 1970’s made many nations aware of their dependency on controlled non-renewable energy sources and this fuelled exploration of alternative energy sources. This included further research into renewable sources such as solar power. Today the world is gripped with the ever increasing problem of pollution, green
house effect, changing climatic conditions, global warming and so on. Yes these Solar Panels can be expensive at today’s price. They will vary by a few thousand either way depending on the brand of panels and inverters each supplier uses, and their overheads, but if these prices are way out of your expectations, then solar may not be for you right now. Though adding the system cost to your mortgage can be surprisingly affordable if you take rising electricity costs into account – there is a solar payback calculator here for you to make your own mind up. Usually, typical cost of an installed 1.5kW solar system can be around $6,500 which can prove costly, but you get government Rebate of $3,000 making your actual cost to you for 1.5KW of solar power to Approx $3,500. In Australia, the most important factor when choosing an installer is to ensure that they are “Clean Energy Council Accredited”. This is a qualification that they need in order for the government to pay out its rebates. And even more important than that is you can be confident that they have been trained in the safe installation of Solar Power Systems. You can sign up for free solar quotes at various websites and compare the prices offered by them to install the solar panels.
It is very important for every individual to contribute to the maximum and help in cleaning the environment for the betterment of our future. Being a part of the world responsible for clean environment makes you feel proud. I am sure you will also like to be one of them.