There is a lot of sun in the tropical Philippines. Solar panel prices might be one of the things you’ll encounter if you search for anything about the sun on the internet. Other things that you might find about the sun on Google is that some cultures worshipped it. But one may ask, what else more about it is there?
To satisfy your curiosity, here are some lesser known trivia about the sun and its energy that might pique your interest.
170 thousand billion watts of energy from the sun hits the earth at any moment
To let you understand just how much energy that truly is, an average smartphone, in a year, uses two thousand watts of energy. Multiply that by a billion, and that means a billion smartphones each using two thousand watts of energy, can use that 170 thousand billion watts hitting the earth right now. However, not all of the solar energy hits the earth’s surface, as most of it is reflected back into space by the earth’s atmosphere, but the energy that does reach the surface is absorbed by the ocean, the land, and the clouds. Still, the energy that hits the surface of the earth in one minute can power the entire earth for a year.
This also means that the earth receives more energy than humans can possibly use. Which is why it’s time for people to use the limitless energy that is available.
Solar Energy was used to purify water
This one might have been practiced since the 1500s by Persian alchemists and by the Ancient Greeks. The process of purifying water using the sun is called solar desalination. To do this, a pit is dug up and a box with saltwater is put in it. Glass is put over the box. Sunlight heats the soil and the water and water vapor collects on the glass can be collected. That water is safe to drink. The solar energy has taken out many impurities but not all of them.
The sun powers the solar system
The sun’s gravitational energy is what powers the solar system. It’s what keeps the earth in orbit around it, just like how earth’s gravity keeps the moon in its orbit. The sun is the reason why there is life on earth because it made the conditions for life to thrive. Plants get their energy from the sun and we get food from plants – it’s a cycle that has powered the Earth’s organisms for centuries.
There are two kinds of solar panels.
The first one is called photovoltaic, or PV cells. These are the ones that catch light and convert them into electricity. The second one is the solar thermal panels. These are the ones that catch the heat from the sun. Water is then ran through these panels to be heat up and used. They are even used to warm water in swimming pools.
A house under construction in Germany with solar panels on its roof.
Germany is a solar power leader
If you’ve read the news, some time ago, Germany was producing so much power from solar energy that the prices hit negative and it had to pay its customers to use the energy for a few hours. Now that’s clean energy.
The sun is so powerful that it made life possible on earth, and it is the best source of energy we have. Be one of the already many (and growing) who are utilizing its renewable, clean, and efficient power today!