Active and Passive Techniques for Utilizing Solar Power
The recent evolutions in solar technologies have made it possible for everyone to utilize solar power. As a result, several people have already started using various kinds of solar systems. These can be used in various ways depending upon the kind of solar techniques they are using. Solar techniques can be classified into categories including the active solar and passive solar techniques.
This classification of these is made on the basis of how they harness, convert, and supply the solar power. They both differ in terms of their usages and applications as well. Let us have a look at the different aspects of the active and passive solar techniques.
Active Solar Energy
Active solar techniques mainly involve the direct absorption of solar energy to generate some usable form of energy, such as electricity. One of the major ways to use active energy is to use solar panels. These solar panels are constructed with semiconductors (e. g. crystalline silicon), which generate electrical energy. these panels are exposed to direct sunlight. Upon absorption of sunlight they convert it into electricity, which is either used directly to power your appliances or is stored by solar inverters.
In addition, solar motors, few kinds of hot water systems, solar collectors, solar trackers, etc are few other kinds of system that utilize active techniques.
Passive Solar Energy
Passive solar techniques do not involve direct absorption of sunlight to convert it into some useful form of energy. They do not use active mechanical systems for absorbing this radiations. Instead, they mainly rely on the design and construction aspects of the systems that are meant to use the energy passively. For instance, a building can be constructed such that it uses this energy to facilitate its heating or cooling. Also, it can be designed to allow effective ventilation inside the building. While designing such buildings, parameters like thermal mass, orientation, shape, density of walls, and arrangement of shadow are considered.
In addition to the buildings that use passive techniques, there are many other usages of passive energy. This energy can be passively used in solar cookers, water heaters, chimneys, and earth sheltering. These all are designed such that this energy is directed to heat air, which is preserved by the appropriate thermal mass. This stored energy is used for various purposes such as heating, cooling, ventilating etc. In addition, solar furnaces and solar forges are widely used in industrial applications as well.