The Power Of The Sun Essay

3360 Words Apr 16th, 2016 14 Pages
The power of the sun is what makes life on Earth possible. Efforts to harness solar energy in concentrated form have long been a human pursuit. Solar technology has existed since the 19th century and has received substantial government support since at least the 1970s. Despite these efforts, solar power comprises less than 1% of U.S. electricity generation (History of Solar Power, para.1, 2016). There have been many applications besides bulk power generation, and the solar-powered vehicle is one of them. The first solar vehicle that a person could drive was demonstrated to the public in 1962 by the International Rectifier Company, and in 1977 the Bluebird car ran without a battery on solar-cells only. Since then there have been many great advances in the technologies of solar-cells, batteries, and the motors they power to move the vehicle, as well as the additional benefits gained from electronic automation and materials engineering. In spite of these advances, there were less than 300,000 SPV’s on the road in America as of 2015, and less than 1 million globally; far less than 1% of all vehicles driven overall (Clean Technica, para.3, 2015). Efforts to increase the number of SPV’s driven on the road has not only been limited by technology, but politics as well. Fossil-fuel lobbyists battle exhaustively to impede the further development and widespread use of this technology to power vehicles in spite of its incredible benefits to society and the environment. However, as is…

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