Renewable Energy : Alternative Energy Resources Essays

1108 Words Nov 30th, 2015 null Page
While discussing fossil fuels, there is nearly always another topic mentioned: alternative energy resources. Alternative energy resources are defined as, “current technologies that have comparable or better performance, but do not emit carbon dioxide (Alternative Energy 2015).” Due to the harmful nature of the overuse of fossil fuels, scientists hope to replace them with four alternative energy resources. The four alternative energy resources are solar power, nuclear power, wind power, and hydroelectric power.
Solar energy is derived from the sun. It is considered to be a valuable resource because, unlike fossil fuels, it is inextinguishable. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, there are four ways to harness it: photovoltaics, concentrating solar power, heating and cooling, and passive solar. Photovoltaics convert light into electricity. Photons of light are absorbed, causing electrons to be released. These electrons are then captured, enabling the resulting electrical current to be used as electricity (NASA Science 2002). Solar panels serve as the objects enabling the electrical currents, and they can power many objects such as calculators and one’s own home.
Concentrating solar power uses mirrors in order to reflect sunlight and use the heat to generate electricity (Energy.gov). According to energy.gov, just one plant is enough to power over 70,000 homes. There are four types: parabolic trough, linear Fresnel, and dish/engine and power tower. All four…

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