There are a number of challenges for solar systems to overcome if the energy source is to be fully used. Even though the popularity of solar systems has increased over the past few years, it still supplies only about 5% of the energy needs in the U.S.
In order for them to achieve their potential in the energy sector, solar systems will have to overcome several challenges.
One of the challenges for solar systems has to do with the source of their energy: the sun. Not all areas of the U.S. get the same amount of sun exposure. There also are factors such as dust and clouds, the changing position of the earth relative to the sun, and the fact that the sun’s energy has to pass through the atmosphere to be handled. All of these factors are challenges for solar systems because they decrease the constancy of the sun’s energy. They also decrease the efficiency of the solar system that collects this energy.
Another of the challenges for solar systems has to do with some kind of storage system available for the electricity developed by solar systems. Costs of these storage systems along with the costs of other technology makes solar energy relatively more expensive than traditional sources of energy. One of the other technology costs has to do with the availability of the rare earth minerals needed to manufacture solar technology. The imposition of production and export quotas by China drives up the cost of these minerals.
Developing new materials could potentially lower the cost of solar energy. Increasing the efficiency of some technology, such as superconducting magnets, for storage and manufacture of solar systems could be one key.
Yet another of the challenges for solar systems is their competition with relatively inexpensive fossil-fuel plants. Perhaps the often-discussed carbon tax will be the event that brings this competition onto more level playing fields.
Once the challenges for solar systems are met and handled adequately, solar energy may become the fuel of the future.
Keep Alternate Energy of Plymouth, MA, in mind for giving you direction in using your solar system in your business or home. They can help you see how to maximize your savings with solar energy. Contact them today at 800-327-6527.