Social Media Sidebar


Please sign up, comment on articles and bring your friends!

Current poll

PlanetTech is asking:

What do you think about our new web site?

Love it, indeed
Really good solution
Same as old one
The old one was better
This is a new option

Quote of the day

Just because something doesn’t do what you planned it to do doesn’t mean it’s useless.


Thomas Edison

How Will Solar Be Used in 20 Years?

Posted in Business on 24th Feb, 2018 10:47 PM by Alex Muller

Where is the solar industry going in the next 20 years? How will we use it? Will it be more widespread? We can most accurately predict the future growth of solar by examining its rise over the last 20 years and taking a look at what scientists are working on today for the advancement of tomorrow. Solar prices have been in a constant state of freefall since the 70’s.


Back in 1975, panels cost $101.05 per Watt and the world boasted an installed solar capacity of only two megawatts. In 2018, panel prices have fallen as low as a mere $0.65 per Watt, while global solar capacity has increased to an excess of 303 Gigawatts.


Looking back 20 years, we can see that 1998 solar prices were $12 per Watt, meaning that costs dropped a total of 94% in two decades. Assuming that solar rates continue to fall at the same rate of decline, then by 2038 we should see panels priced at just $0.04 per Watt.


It has been estimated that, thanks to increased affordability, humanity could see 20% of global energy consumption attributed to solar power by 2027. If trends stay the same for the following decade, could we stand to see 40% of global power produced by solar in 2038?


Of course, this is assuming trends stay the same. Market advancements and more affordable materials could actually accelerate this process, granting us increased solar capacity far earlier.


Silicon, the material used to create most solar panels, has an absorption efficiency rate of only 16% to 20%. Scientists are hoping to increase efficiency in the years to come by crafting panels from new materials. Many believe that perovskite solar cells hold the key to unlocking a more efficient solar future.


A switch to perovskite would help the solar industry in a number of ways. First, these cells would be far more affordable to produce and install thanks to its natural abundance. Perovskite could totally replace traditional silicon cells or they could add to existing silicon structural designs, creating a top layer that would maximize efficiency.


Perhaps the most ambitious solar generation concept to date comes from the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA), which is seeking to bypass climate issues completely by installing solar panels in space. These satellites would have direct unobstructed access to the sun’s rays. Cloud cover would never be an issue again. All gathered energy would then be transmitted wirelessly back to the surface through microwaves. JAXA hopes to produce a solar satellite with a one Giggawatt production capacity sometime in the 2030’s. 

Tags: solarenergyhardwaresolar panels

Read original article » Back to category



Recent headlines

  • Posted in Science on 2018-12-09 23:56:38
    CRISPR Babies: Mankind's Next Giant Leap? more
    Posted in Hardware on 2018-12-07 14:22:16
    SpaceX Successfully Launches to Space Station But more
    Posted in Science on 2018-12-07 14:17:51
    Simulated One Gravity Living on the Moon and Mars With more
    Posted in Business on 2018-12-07 14:12:33
    Most Valuable Company Title Moved Between Amazon, more
    Posted in Science on 2018-12-04 03:51:30
    SpaceX Lessons Which Massively Speed Improvement of more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-10 01:33
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Business on 2013-10-20 07:17
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Software on 2013-10-20 06:43
Pirate Bay Browser Clocks 1,000,000 more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-10 02:10
Google reportedly investing hundreds of millions into more
Posted in Medicine on 2013-10-14 03:13
Endothelial Cells Can Repair and Regenerate Organs, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Spacex says China is their main competitor for more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Staring at Your Phone Could Be Making You Short more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Oculus Rift virtual reality headset coming to mobile, more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
China is working towards a manned lunar mission in more
Posted in Science on 01.01.2010
Delivering drugs via nanoparticles to target more

Recent Blog Posts

  • Posted by AlexMuller
    Even light drinking increases risk of more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Researchers have discovered how to slow more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Human retinas grown in a dish explain how color vision more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    The smartphone app that can tell you’re depressed before more
    Posted by AlexMuller
    Neural networks don’t understand what optical illusions more

Login to your Account

Login to your PlanetTech Account here

Remember me

Create a New Account

You just need username and password

The following errors occured:
Verify password:
Remember me