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So far Adrian has created 75 blog entries.

Ever Heard of Solar Panel Backpacks?

Solar panel technology isn’t just found on rooftops. Solar technology has grown a lot since its inception into the world. From calculators to satellites to rooftops of homes, schools, and commercial buildings and now it’s even making its way into everyday technology.   In a previous post entitled Even Computers Are Going Solar, I had the opportunity to mention laptops that are designed with solar power capabilities. Now, I get the opportunity to mention another cool technology with solar integration. Guess where you can find them? In your backpacks! I know, it’s in the title, but it’s still fun to ask. I actually wasn’t aware of solar panel powered backpacks until more recently, but after a little bit of curious [...]


Why Samsung Builds Solar-Powered Schools in Africa

What is one of Africa’s greatest problems? Electricity – the lack of access to power has been one of Africa’s greatest problems in terms of providing work for the community, light during the day and night, refrigeration to keep medicine and food from spoiling, and power to appliances to boil clean water for infection control.   The quality of life in Africa can be greatly improved if electricity can be provided. With that note in mind, Samsung decided to launch their first Solar Powered Internet School at the Samsung Engineering Academy in Boksburg, South Africa late last year. The goal is to build an “exclusively solar-powered, mobile and completely independent classroom that is geared towards increasing accessibility to education and [...]


Warren Buffett Purchases Solar Power Plant

Warren Buffett Invests in Solar If Warren Buffett invests in solar, then that must be a good indication of a promising future. After all, he’s only regarded as one of the most successful investors in the world. To many, he is a legend – a legendary investor who ranks as one of the wealthiest people alive. In fact, his high school senior yearbook picture reads: “likes math: a future stock broker.” In December of 2011, Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Holdings announced their first entrance into the solar industry by purchasing First Solar’s Topaz Solar Farm power plant in California. Could Buffett’s move warrant signs that solar will be a big player in large scale utility projects? You bet! There is [...]


Why Work For Solar Companies: Job Fields Part 5 of 5

Go Back to Part 4 of 5: Occupations in Solar Power Plant Construction and Operations  The following are solar job opportunities in photovoltaic installations, maintenance, and support. Site assessors determine how much energy can be harvested at a particular location and then make recommendations based on that assessment. Site assessors help determine the best type, size, and layout of solar panels, and help draw up plans for installation crews. Assessors may take readings of sunlight at a proposed location, review weather patterns, and calculate potential costs and savings. Site assessors are usually hired for commercial projects by companies that are making substantial investments in solar power and therefore want to ensure maximum benefits from the project. Some site assessors may [...]


Why Work For Solar Companies: Job Fields Part 4 of 5

Go Back to Part 3 of 5: Occupations in Solar Power Manufacturing and Solar Power Plant Development  The following are solar job opportunities in construction and operations. Construction managers oversee the construction of solar power plants, from site selection to the final construction of the plant. They supervise a team of diverse occupations, including engineers, scientists, construction workers, and heavy-equipment operators. Construction managers are employed by large construction companies, energy companies, or utilities companies and work under contract or as salaried employees. Because of the size of a power plant and the complexity of the construction, a project manager will typically oversee several construction managers, who then supervise individual aspects of the construction. The construction manager's time is split between [...]


Why Work For Solar Companies: Job Fields Part 3 of 5

Go Back to Part 2 of 5: Occupations in Solar Power Engineering  The following are solar job opportunities in manufacturing and power plant development. Semiconductor processors are workers who oversee the manufacturing process of solar cells. Semiconductors are unique substances, which act as either conductors or insulators of electricity, depending on the conditions. Semiconductor processors turn semiconductors into photovoltaic cells. The process begins with the production of cylinders of silicon or other semiconducting materials, which are called ingots. The ingots are sliced into thin wafers using automated equipment, and are sometimes polished. The wafers are then connected to metal strips and placed into the cells. These cells are then arranged into larger solar panels. The electrical circuitry of solar cells [...]


Why Work For Solar Companies: Job Fields Part 2 of 5

Go Back to Part 1 of 5: Occupations in Scientific Research The following are solar job opportunities in engineering. Materials engineers are involved in the development, processing, and testing of the materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. In the solar industry, they work with semiconductors, metals, plastics, glass, and composites (mixtures of these materials) to create new materials that meet electrical and chemical requirements of solar cells. They create and study materials at an atomic level, using advanced processes to replicate the characteristics of those materials and their components using computer modeling programs. Chemical engineers apply the principles of chemistry to design or improve equipment or to devise processes for manufacturing chemicals and [...]


Why Work For Solar Companies: Job Fields Part 1 of 5

The market for solar is growing. There are so many reasons why people are drawn to the solar industry. Sunlight, being the most abundant source of energy on Earth, is providing a way for mankind to generate electricity and hence bring about more job opportunities with great benefits on an individual and international level. Solar power brings about cleaner, renewable energy that lowers carbon dioxide emissions which contribute to global warming. It also helps bring electricity and a means of sustainability to third world countries, lowers our electricity bills, encourages good habits and creativity, provides an opportunity to teach and bond with our children, and give us a method to produce our own source of power. It’s literally a natural [...]


Can Farming Solar Energy in Space Be The Future?

Can you imagine having solar panel farms in space? With the way technology has advanced, improved, and been continually innovated throughout the age,s I wouldn’t doubt such possibilities. In the 1950s, AT&T Bell Laboratories began using solar cells to power their satellites. In fact, even until today, solar cells continue to power space machines and devices. People are full of creativity and imaginative ideas that were once thought far-fetched, yet now may be easily at the tips of our fingers. With time, research, dedication, persistence, and belief, so many wild ideas will come to life. The solar panel farm, in my mind, is one of those ideas. Imagine having orbital generators providing clean and renewable energy in space. That would [...]


What Are Solar Trackers?

Solar trackers follow the sun. The term 'solar' is related to the sun, and the term 'tracker' basically means to follow something. I love it when devices are named describing exactly what they do! In relation to photovoltaic panels, solar trackers orient toward the sun to harness more sunlight. Solar trackers are positioned and attached to solar panels. Depending on the type of trackers obtained and installed, the range of tilt will vary. The idea is to be able to tilt the solar panels in the direction that the sun moves throughout the day and, hence, throughout the year as the seasons and weather changes. The functionality is simple – the more the photovoltaic panels can face directly toward the [...]