A great deal of advancement has been made in alternative energy as more number of people are looking for a different source of energy and one that is more environmentally and renewable. There are also greater advancements in solar energy with better and sleeker solar panels. This includes technological improvements, better equipment and more efficient power outputs at a lower cost.
There are several alternative energy options and they are getting more affordable and viable sources of energy. Both alternative sources of energy wind and solar are smart energy options. However, there are several differences between the two, this article explains the difference between solar energy and wind energy and helps decide which one is different. It is a must-read for someone considering to opt for solar panels on the Sunshine Coast.
Comparison between Solar Power & Wind Energy
Many people might be familiar with solar energy as an alternative source of energy however fewer are likely to have knowledge of how wind energy is harnessed as alternative source energy.
Here is how they compare:
- Power Generation: The generation of solar power takes place by harnessing the energy of the sunlight and converting it into electricity. Solar panels are specially designed with solar cells. These solar cells capture the energy that the sun releases in the form of photons. It helps generate electricity and is done with the help of multiple solar panels.
On the other hand, wind power is only generated when the wind turns the propeller blades of the turbine around the rotor. This spins the generator and in turns generates electricity. This is similar to the aerodynamics of the wing of an aeroplane. Thus, as long as there is good wind current, it is possible to generate a good amount of power.
- Cost of installation: The cost of a solar panel system depends on several factors. There are also different types of solar panels with different power output. Thus the cost of the panels largely depends on the type of solar panels and the amount of energy that is necessary to power the house. One of the benefits of installing solar panels is that besides the initial investment there is no other cost like a monthly energy bill. As far as wind energy is concerned the cost of installation of wind turbines will vary depending on the size of the system and height of the tower. This cost can be high to start with however it can work out cost-effective in the longer run.
- Maintenance requirements: A solar energy system is fairly simple and consists of no moving parts, hence the maintenance of this type of system is minimal. The solar panels are built to sustain harsh weather conditions hence the level of maintenance required for this type of system is very low. As far as the wind turbines are concerned it consists of plenty of moving parts. Hence power generation using a wind turbine will require a great deal of maintenance.
- Efficiently: A solar panel is a system highly efficient and has the ability to convert sunlight into energy in a very efficient manner; in fact, it is believed to have 22 to 23% efficiency. Wind turbines can convert half of the wind energy that hits the turbines into electrical power. However, one of the drawbacks of wind turbine power is that wind does not blow at a continuous speed at all times; hence it is hard to predict the output.
- Reliability: Solar power is a renewable source of energy that functions in both sunny and cloudy weather conditions. This is not the case with wind turbines; since it is not always windy. It is necessary to have wind speeds of at least 12 miles per hour to generate power.
At the end of the day homeowners, all steps to reduce their carbon footprint and dependence on fossil fuel are highly beneficial to the environment. However, opting for solar power on Sunshine Coast is bound to be more efficient and cost-effective as compared to installing a wind turbine system.