What is Solar Energy?

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What is solar energy? Universe Today defines solar energy as radiant energy produced by the sun. It is both light and heat. Solar energy, along with secondary solar-powered resources such as wind and wave power, accounts for most of the renewable energy on Earth. (Coffey 1) The deliberate use of solar energy began sometime between the 7th century B.C. and the 13th century A.D. when people used magnifying glasses to concentrate sun’s rays to produce fire. Today we concentrate the sun’s energy in a number of ways and use this solar energy for everything.
One technology that we use to convert light energy from the sun into electricity is solar panels. A solar panel is a packaged, intersected assortment of solar, or photovoltaic, cells that can be used to produce and supply electricity in a range of settings. The panels use light energy from the sun to produce electricity to power your home or business. Power companies, particularly those in states with lots of sunny days, such as Arizona, have made significant investment in large scale solar power installations over the last 5 to 10 years. Photovoltaics is the direct conversion of light into electricity at the atomic level. (NASA 1) It is also the name for the area of research and technology focused on the use of photovoltaic (PV) cells to produce electricity from light. Photovoltaic cell operation involves the use of a material that absorbs photons of light, the release of electrons that when captured result in an
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