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Solar - Division of Information Technology, Stony Brook University

SOLAR is Stony Brook University's enterprise-wide, self-service system which provides faculty, staff, and students with online access to manage personal ...

Solar power - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Solar power is the conversion of sunlight into electricity, either directly using photovoltaics (PV), or indirectly using concentrated solar power (CSP).

Solar Power Systems - Complete Home Solar Systems

Wholesale Solar's package systems offer time & money saving solutions for off- grid and grid connected homes, cabins, businesses, boats, RV's and telecom ...

SolarCity: Solar Panels, Solar Power Systems & Energy Efficiency

Solar power can actually cost less than you pay now with low, locked-in rates. The savings can add up to thousands! There's no upfront cost, you only need a ...

Solar | Department of Energy - U.S. Department of Energy

Solar. The Energy Department's 2014 SunShot Grand Challenge Summit is in full swing -- bringing together government, industry, national laboratories and the ...

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Solar Roadways - Introduction

"Can I still get a Solar Roadways perk?", "I'd love to be a part of this movement", etc. Many people hadn't even heard about Solar Roadways until after the ...

Solar Power -- About Solar Power - CleanTechnica

For a micro-scale example, the solar energy hitting the state of Texas each month is equal to the total amount of energy the Texas oil and gas industry has ever ...

Solar Industry Data | SEIA

Solar industry research data for Q3 2014. Information and graphs about the growth of the industry in Q3 and how the price of solar energy has changed over the ...

The American Solar Energy Society, Leading the Renewable ...

Established in 1954, the nonprofit American Solar Energy Society (ASES) is the nation's leading association of solar professionals & advocates.

SolarWorld: High performance solar power systems for home ...

Solar products for the consumer, education, advertising, gifts, and electronic markets. Solar cells, panels and photovoltaics. Junior Solar Sprint kit, battery ...

WE CARE Solar | The Power to Save Lives

Thank you for enabling us to light up 23 Solar Suitcases in Hadiya, Ethiopia in partnership with WEEMA International. Through our donor matching campaign, ...

Solar News | Latest Solar Power and Renewable Energy News

Get the lastest solar energy news from Greentech Media. Critical analysis of the latest renewable energy and solar power news from noted industry leaders.

Solar Power

Solar power is a clean and renewable source of energy that is increasing in popularity as the world struggles to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels. While wind and hydroelectric power are limited to certain locations, solar power can simply be fitted to a building, reducing a business’ dependence on the local electricity supply. Of course, there are advantages and disadvantages to solar panels. Although very little energy in the United States comes from solar power, a thriving installation and maintenance sector has sprung up to supply homeowners and businesses with these products. At some point, every business will need to consider whether or not to invest in solar power.




Reduction in Energy Costs

Businesses and households can reduce their monthly energy bills substantially when they switch over to solar power. After making the initial investment in the purchase and installation of solar power equipment, the user can continue to receive the benefits of free solar power for years to come. The maintenance costs of the equipment are negligible, and the user gets freedom from grid power. Once the initial investment in solar panel systems is recovered, the user starts making net savings on energy costs.

In some areas, if the consumer is able to produce surplus power, it can be sold back to private grid power companies operating in the region. The consumer receives energy credits from the power companies in exchange for this surplus power. However, the use of solar power is still very limited among consumers. According to the New York Times, as of 2010, solar power still accounts for less than one percent of U.S. electricity consumption.


Protecting the Environment

Solar energy is a clean and renewable resource. Unlike conventional sources of electricity, solar power generation does not impact the environment adversely. It allows businesses to reduce their global carbon footprint, and sets a healthy trend of relying on green technology to run the business.

Large businesses can use solar panels to cut down on their dependence of the power grid. It is not necessary to switch over entirely to a solar source. A business or home can continue to maintain conventional sources of power simultaneously, which can still help to save the environment. The best part about solar energy systems is that they can be used to power small homes and businesses as efficiently as they can power large buildings, factories, and warehouses.


Positive Consumer Perception

One of the key benefits for businesses that project a green image by adopting solar power technology is that consumers perceive such businesses in a positive light. Consumers are increasingly in favor of patronizing companies that are socially and environmentally responsible. Even households that use solar power are likely to enjoy a positive response from the local community for their contributions to saving the environment.


Tax Incentives

In many countries around the world, governments are proactively promoting the use of solar energy. To encourage both business and home users to switch over to solar power, many state governments offer tax rebates and other incentives to solar energy users. This can add to the economic benefits of solar energy, apart from the low cost of producing such energy.




While there are benefits to installing these panels, such as saving on energy and taxes, there are some factors to consider prior to making a purchase.


Initial Costs

While there are great tax incentives and rebates that are widely available to individuals and businesses who install solar panels, the initial costs are quite hefty. A 5,000-watt system can cost $30,000 to $50,000 to install. The average cost per watt is $9.00, and most homes need at least 3,000 to 8,000 watts to get sufficient electricity.


Climate Variability

Solar energy can be used in most climates; however, the amount of hours that the sun is out determines how many panels you need and what the power wattage requirement will be. Solar panels need sunlight; big trees, large buildings, and inclement weather will directly impact the amount of sunlight your panels receive, which affects the amount of energy emitting into your home.


Aesthetic Value

Solar panels have a reputation for being unsightly. Indeed, countless individuals throughout the United States are denied the opportunity to place solar panels on the roofs of their home by their town’s review board due to their appearance, according to Metro Green Business. Depending on where a person lives, they may be forbidden from installing solar panels on their homes or places of business.


Reliance on Stored Energy

At night, stored energy must be used, or individuals with solar panels must have an alternative energy system. It is not uncommon for individuals who use solar panels to have two or three backup systems. Solar panels will never work when the sun goes down, so the backup energy source must be reliable.



Solar power is quickly becoming a viable solution to the world’s energy needs. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, solar installations rose 81% between 2007 and 2008.

More Common than You Think

The technology behind solar energy has improved significantly in the last 20 years and also lowered in price. Considering the materials used, preparation, and installation, solar power conversion costs around $40,000 up front. Financing is often available due to the typically high initial cost of solar power materials and installation. Though, according to the New York Times, solar power accounts for less than 1% of U.S. electricity use, the U.S. government is offering tax breaks to homes and businesses that employ these panels.



As most businesses operate during the day, and consequently use the most energy during the day, solar power is a useful energy option for businesses and home owners. While there are many benefits, such as reducing energy costs, protecting the environment and even tax breaks, there are also a couple of pitfalls, such as the initial cost of the equipment and the aesthetics of the panels. However, as global energy prices rise and solar panels become more efficient, solar power will be viewed more and more as a viable energy option for the environmentally conscious business, as the current reliance on fossil fuels cannot last forever.




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