Solar Power’s Story

edmond_becquerel_by_nadar

Alexandre Edmond Becquerel

Solar power is not a new technology.

In fact, the first research into solar panels was conducted by Alexandre Edmond Becquerel in 1839, and the first recorded solar power generator was created by Augustin Mouchot and displayed at the 1878 Universal Exhibition in Paris.

The problem with solar power generation and the reason it has taken so long to become popular is twofold. On the one hand, solar panels have traditionally been limited by relatively low-efficiency yields. To give you an idea of what that means,the first practical silicon solar cell was introduced in 1954 by Bell Labs and had an efficiency of 6%, meaning that 94% of the solar energy that struck the cell was wasted.

 

Augustin Mouchot

Augustin Mouchot

On the one hand, solar panels have traditionally been limited by relatively low-efficiency yields. To give you an idea of what that means, the first practical silicon solar cell was introduced in 1954 by Bell Labs, and had an efficiency of 6%, meaning that 94% of the solar energy that struck the cell was wasted. The second problem that has kept solar panels from gaining widespread use has been price. The price per watt of solar power has stayed extremely high for decades. For example, in 1977 it was $76, and it and stayed above $10 a watt until the late 1980’s. Only in the last few years have prices dropped to an economic level, to an all time low of ¢30 in 2015, according to Bloomberg.

 

Get A Solar Education

While solar power is an amazing technology that has the ability to drastically change our entire energy production landscape, it remains fairly misunderstood, and a lot of misinformation is spread around.

That’s why we’ve done our best to help you gain a better understanding of what solar power is, what it is not, and how it works. You can find information about the mechanics of solar power, along with a more detailed history of solar panels and their development by browsing our solar power resources. In addition, you should spend time looking over the solar energy tax credits that are available to you if you decide to install solar panels on your home or business.

If you can’t find the information you’re looking for, we also suggest you get in contact with Solar Power Utah so that we can answer your questions. Installing solar panels is a great decision, but it should also be an informed one.