Solar power is the transformation of solar energy from the sun into electrical energy, either directly with solar photovoltaics (PV) or indirectly using concentrating solar power (CSP). Many solar power plants use PV systems in order to supply large national and international markets with affordable, reliable electrical energy. However, many such PV plants have had problems generating adequate amounts of electricity over short or long durations due to unfavorable weather conditions, making solar power an unattractive proposition for most commercial applications. Concentrating solar power (CSP) involves using highly concentrated sunlight to generate electrical energy by conduction within the array itself. Although this technology offers a number of advantages over other alternative energy production methods, its application can still be limited to certain applications and circumstances.
PV concentrates solar power by utilizing a system of photovoltaic cells to convert the sun's rays into electricity. These cells here are made from a material which absorbs the sun's rays and alters them into energy suitable for powering any device which needs electricity. In the most common types of PV cell arrays, the PV cells are grouped together into "panels," each of which is connected to the next in a process called concentrator harnessing. The panels and the interconnected grid network they link together to provide a controllable output of electricity, are often placed on top of high-tensile towers to maximize the amount of electricity the array can produce.
A number of solar companies, such as Germany's largest solar power provider, are developing new, more efficient forms of concentrator harnessing. These newer technologies are likely to substantially reduce the costs of implementing solar technologies to the home front. However, solar power may still not be cost-competitive with traditional electricity solutions for many consumers. One possible reason for this is that it takes a relatively high concentration of solar technologies in order to generate the same amount of electricity as it would with older types of generators. This means that while older generations of solar generators relied primarily on the "classical" method of generating electricity, newer generation solar technologies rely on a much more complex process for generating electricity.
The process of converting sunlight into other types of energy requires the PV cell arrays to be exposed to light of the correct spectrum. When sunlight falls on a concentrated area of a solar power generator, its rays are absorbed and converted directly into electricity. A photovoltaic array is designed in much the same way, except that instead of using light to turn the electric current into usable energy, it uses sunlight. This method allows for greater concentrations of PV cell arrays in order to yield the greatest amount of electrical energy. This energy needs to be stored, either in batteries or externally, in order to meet energy requirements when it is most convenient for the user.
Another aspect of concentrating solar power technology is thermal energy production, also called solar thermal energy. Through the use of the PV cell or the array itself, heat is used to transform the sunlight into usable energy. The most common form of thermal energy generation is the use of heat pumps, although there are other less common methods as well. Although solar thermal energy has the advantage of being an environmentally friendly way to obtain electricity, it can also be significantly more costly than the use of coal or oil-based energy.
One aspect of solar energy that most people aren't aware of is that the actual sunlight itself isn't even the only thing that can be converted to energy. An important factor in solar energy production is the use of the much larger and more powerful photovoltaic array. This array is able to take the direct sunlight and convert it directly into electricity or energy for your home. The electricity generated is then routed through a power inverter and sent to whatever electric device you need it to power. Because of this huge leap forward in solar technology, solar energy is quickly becoming the wave of the future. Take a look at this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_power for more information about this topic.