What Is Solar Energy |Advantage and disadvantage of Solar energy|Solar energy Companies.

Solar energy is the transformation of heat, the energy that comes from the sun. It has been used for thousands of years in many different ways by people all over the world. The oldest uses of solar energy is for heating, cooking, and drying.

 What is Solar energy?

Solar energy is radiant light and heat from the Sun that is harnessed using a range of ever-evolving technologies such as solar heating, photovoltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture, molten salt power plants and artificial photosynthesis.




Passive solar techniques include orienting a building to the Sun, selecting materials with favorable thermal mass or light-dispersing properties, and designing spaces that naturally circulate air. The large magnitude of solar energy available makes it a highly appealing source of electricity. 


Advantage and disadvantage of Solar Energy?


Did you know that the energy sun provides to the earth for one hour could meet the global energy needs for one year? Undoubtedly, the sun is a powerful energy source, and even though we are not able but to collect a fraction of this energy, yet harnessing this power by installing solar panels can make a significant difference to the planet.


While it has been widely criticised for being expensive or inefficient, solar energy has now proved to be extremely beneficial - not only for the environment but also for the private economy.


Advantages of Solar Energy.



1) Renewable Energy Source

Among all the benefits of solar panels, the most important thing is that solar energy is a truly renewable energy source. It can be harnessed in all areas of the world and is available every day. We cannot run out of solar energy, unlike some of the other sources of energy.


Solar energy will be accessible as long as we have the sun, therefore sunlight will be available to us for at least 5 billion years when according to scientists the sun is going to die.


2) Reduces Electricity Bills

Since you will be meeting some of your energy needs with the electricity your solar system has generated, your energy bills will drop. How much you save on your bill will be dependent on the size of the solar system and your electricity or heat usage.


For example, if you are a business using commercial solar panels this switch can have huge benefits because the large system size can cover large chunks of your energy bills.


Moreover, not only will you be saving on the electricity bill, but there is also a possibility to receive payments for the surplus energy that you export back to the grid through the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG). If you generate more electricity than you use (considering that your solar panel system is connected to the grid). 


3) Diverse Applications

Solar energy can be used for diverse purposes. You can generate electricity (photovoltaics) or heat (solar thermal). Solar energy can be used to produce electricity in areas without access to the energy grid, to distil water in regions with limited clean water supplies and to power satellites in space.


Solar energy can also be integrated into the materials used for buildings. Not long ago Sharp introduced transparent solar energy windows.


4) Low Maintenance Costs

Solar energy systems generally don’t require a lot of maintenance. You only need to keep them relatively clean, so cleaning them a couple of times per year will do the job. If in doubt, you can always rely on specialised cleaning companies, which offer this service from around £25-£35. Most reliable solar panel manufacturers offer 20-25 years warranty.


Also, as there are no moving parts, there is no wear and tear. The inverter is usually the only part that needs to be changed after 5-10 years because it is continuously working to convert solar energy into electricity and heat (solar PV vs. solar thermal). Apart from the inverter, the cables also need maintenance to ensure your solar power system runs at maximum efficiency.


So, after covering the initial cost of the solar system, you can expect very little spending on maintenance and repair work.


5) Technology Development

Technology in the solar power industry is constantly advancing and improvements will intensify in the future. Innovations in quantum physics and nanotechnology can potentially increase the effectiveness of solar panels and double, or even triple, the electrical input of the solar power systems.


Disadvantages of Solar Energy




1) Cost

The initial cost of purchasing a solar system is fairly high. This includes paying for solar panels, inverter, batteries, wiring, and the installation. Nevertheless, solar technologies are constantly developing, so it is safe to assume that prices will go down in the future.


2) Weather-Dependent

Although solar energy can still be collected during cloudy and rainy days, the efficiency of the solar system drops. Solar panels are dependent on sunlight to effectively gather solar energy. Therefore, a few cloudy, rainy days can have a noticeable effect on the energy system. You should also take into account that solar energy cannot be collected during the night.


On the other hand, if you also require your water heating solution to work at night or during wintertime, thermodynamic panels are an alternative to consider.


3) Solar Energy Storage Is Expensive

Solar energy has to be used right away, or it can be stored in large batteries. These batteries, used in off-the-grid solar systems, can be charged during the day so that the energy is used at night. This is a good solution for using solar energy all day long but it is also quite expensive.


In most cases, it is smarter to just use solar energy during the day and take energy from the grid during the night (you can only do this if your system is connected to the grid). Luckily your energy demand is usually higher during the day so you can meet most of it with solar energy.


4) Uses a Lot of Space

The more electricity you want to produce, the more solar panels you will need, as you want to collect as much sunlight as possible. Solar PV panels require a lot of space and some roofs are not big enough to fit the number of solar panels that you would like to have.


An alternative is to install some of the panels in your yard but they need to have access to sunlight. If you don’t have the space for all the panels that you wanted, you can opt for installing fewer to still satisfy some of your energy needs.


5) Associated with Pollution

Although pollution related to solar energy systems is far less compared to other sources of energy, solar energy can be associated with pollution. Transportation and installation of solar systems have been associated with the emission of greenhouse gases.


There are also some toxic materials and hazardous products used during the manufacturing process of solar photovoltaic systems, which can indirectly affect the environment.


Solar Energy Companies




Governments, businesses and individual consumers increasingly are looking to alternative and sustainable forms of energy beyond fossil-based fuels as signs of climate change escalate. While solar and other alternative energies tend to be more expensive or more difficult to produce compared with traditional fossil fuels, they have the major benefit of leaving behind a significantly smaller environmental impact. Companies attempting to capitalize on increased demand for solar energy have encountered widely disparate levels of success.


These are the 10 biggest solar companies by 12-month trailing (TTM) revenue. This list is usually limited to companies that are publicly traded in the U.S. or Canada, either directly or through ADRs. But the solar industry is largely based and listed outside of those countries, so excluding many companies would not properly represent the industry. Four companies on our list technically have ADRs, but they trade so little as to make them inadvisable to purchase. These are GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Ltd. (GCPEF), Xinyi Solar Holdings Ltd. (968), Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd. (YGEHY), and SMA Solar Technology AG (S92). Some foreign companies may report semiannually, and so may have longer lag times. Nearly all data are courtesy of YCharts and are as of September 11, 2020, except those specifically designated as being from other sources.


1) JinkoSolar Holding Co. Ltd. (JKS)

Revenue (TTM): $4.6 billion

Net Income (TTM): $163.1 million

Market Cap: $909.9 million

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 6.9%

Exchange: New York Stock Exchange

JinkoSolar is a Chinese holding company that produces solar cells, modules and other materials related to solar energy. It is among the top producers of solar panels globally by gigawatts (GW) delivered. The company serves customers in China, the U.S., Europe, the Middle East, and South America.


2) Canadian Solar Inc. (CSIQ)

Revenue (TTM): $3.2 billion

Net Income (TTM): $257.3 million

Market Cap: $1.6 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 30.5%

Exchange: NASDAQ

Canadian Solar Inc. is a solar product developer that designs, builds, and sells modules with residential, commercial, and industrial applications. The company's products include solar modules, inverters, and system kits.


3) First Solar Inc. (FSLR)

Revenue (TTM): $3.1 billion

Net Income (TTM): $98.8 million

Market Cap: $7.4 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 12.0%

Exchange: NASDAQ

First Solar provides solar panels, photovoltaic power plants, and related services such as construction, maintenance, and recycling of these products. The company utilizes a thin film semiconductor technology to achieve enhanced efficiency and sustainability in its solar modules.


4) GCL-Poly Energy Holdings Ltd. (GCPEF)

Revenue (TTM): $2.8 billion

Net Income (TTM): -$32.6 million

Market Cap: $756.9 million

1-Year Trailing Total Return: -10.5%2

Exchange: OTC3

GCL-Poly Energy Holdings is a Hong Kong-based company that manufactues polysilicon for use in solar power products. The company also operates cogeneration plants in China.


5) SunPower Corp. (SPWR)

Revenue (TTM): $1.9 billion

Net Income (TTM): $8.4 million

Market Cap: $1.8 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 32.5%

Exchange: NASDAQ

SunPower designs and builds silicon photovoltaic cells and related solar materials. The company offers solar power products as well as services relating to those products to customers worldwide.


6) SolarEdge Technologies Inc. (SEDG)

Revenue (TTM): $1.6 billion

Net Income (TTM): $173.3 million

Market Cap: $9.4 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 148.9%

Exchange: NASDAQ

SolarEdge Technologies builds and distributes equipment and technology for photovoltaic arrays. The company provides optimization services as well as monitoring solutions for photovoltaic systems. SolarEdge's products include monitoring equipment, optimizers, and inverters. The company is based in Israel.


7) Xinyi Solar Holdings Ltd. (968)

Revenue (TTM): $1.2 billion

Net Income (TTM): $368.5 million

Market Cap: $10.5 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 92.1%4

Exchange: Hong Kong Stock Exchange.


8) Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd. (YGEHY)

Revenue (TTM): $1.2 billion

Net Income (TTM): -$496.1 million

Market Cap: $2.4 million

1-Year Trailing Total Return: -22.1%5

Exchange: OTC3

Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. is a holding company that conducts research, designs, builds, and sells photovoltaic modules through its subsidiaries. The company is based in China.


9) SMA Solar Technology AG (S92)

Revenue (TTM): $1.2 billion

Net Income (TTM): $9.2 million

Market Cap: $1.5 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 55.3%3

Exchange: Xetra3

German company SMA Solar Technology manufactures a variety of solar energy equipment, including solar inverters and alternating current converters. The company serves customers around the world.


10 Atlantica Sustainable Infrastructure PLC (AY)

Revenue (TTM): $972.4 million

Net Income (TTM): $17.0 million

Market Cap: $2.8 billion

1-Year Trailing Total Return: 20.4%

Exchange: NASDAQ









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