Everyone has been there. You open your electric bill and think “Why does electricity cost so much?” Maybe there’s a better way to get electricity to power your home or business.

One alternative is solar power, but what is solar power? Continue reading to find out how solar energy is produced, how we collect it, and whether it’s a good investment.

Solar Energy

Solar energy is any energy that the sun produces. The sun produces energy through a process called nuclear fusion. Fusion happens when particles are at such a high temperature and pressure that they stick together.

When protons, or hydrogen nuclei, are in situations like this, as happens in the center of the sun, they fuse together to form a helium nucleus. This process releases a large amount of energy which radiates from the sun as light.

Once the light from the sun reaches the Earth, we can collect it and turn that energy into a form that we can use.

Solar Power

When the sun’s light reaches the Earth, solar panels collect it and convert it into electricity. They use photovoltaic cells, which comes from the words for light and voltage.

These cells consist of two layers of silicon that have been treated differently. The top layer is treated with phosphorous, which gives it extra electrons, while the bottom layer is treated with boron to give it fewer electrons.

Since the layers have opposite charges, they produce an electric field. When light from the sun hits one of these cells, it knocks some of the electrons off of the atoms in the cell.

Normally, the electrons go off in a random direction, but since they are in the electric field of the cell, they move in a particular direction. After this happens many times, the electrons all flowing in the same direction become an electric current.

Is It Worth It?

There are many ways that solar panels can help save money. One way is called net metering. Normally when you use electricity in your home, a meter keeps track of how much you use.

However, if you have solar panels installed, you can sometimes generate more electricity than you use. In this case, the meter will read less than it did previously. Some power companies provide credits for generating this power.

The federal government also has a program where the installation of solar panels can be tax-deductible, so you can save even more money. In any case, your electric bill will almost certainly be lower with solar panels.

In addition to solar panels on your home or office, you can use portable solars to keep your phone charged or power other devices. If you’d like to learn more about portable solar power, you can check it out at PoweredPortableSolar.com.

Next Steps

Now that you know all about what solar energy is, how solar panels work, and if they’re a good investment, feel free to do some more research and decide if they are right for you.

If you found this interesting, please check out our other articles!