Alternative Electric Energy Source Is Available Today

Posted on 31st January 2011 in wind energy

General interest in alternative energy is growing as more people become concerned about global warming. Alternative energy solutions are an attempt to help reduce fossil fuel consumption and  preserve the earth’s natural resources.

As all nations continue to burn oil, gas and coal we are contributing to the acceleration of global warming. The continued depletion of fossil fuels is a problem that has reached critical stages and something has to be done fast before finite resources are completely exhausted.

Proponents of alternative electric energy tell us that we can preserve the world’s resources by adopting renewable energy systems. They say that instead of continuing to rely on non renewable fuels we should employ new sustainable technology. Such technology works by generating electricity from abundant sources that can be harnessed quite easily. Most alternative electric energy systems are simple to understand and utilize.

There is nothing new about using renewable sources for energy. Many alternative electric energy systems are simply an updated version of old fashioned technology. Sources of energy can be generated using the power of the wind, sun or water.

Wind power through wind energy turbines are one alternative electric energy technology. On many European landscapes you can still find relics of old windmills that were used by farmers to grind grain. The wind was caught in the great blades of these mills which would cause them to turn. The rotating action turned a shaft and the shaft would turn the millstones. Modern windmills are not connected to millstones but rather turbines. When the turbines spin they create electricity. Wind turbines are a renewable source of electric energy because wind is free and abundant.

Like wind power, hydro power is an alternative electric energy system that has been around for a long time. Rushing water from rivers was harnessed to turn a wheel that was also connected to a mill. Modern hydro power typically uses the force of water released from a dam to turn the blades of a turbine. Turbines are connected to a generator that produces electricity. Hydro electric power is considered a clean and cost effective alternative energy system for mass usage.

Solar power is a very convenient alternative electricity system that is becoming very popular for small user and domestic application. This system is highly adaptable and can be fitted on rooftops. Solar power has been praised for its ingenious simplicity which rests on the invention of the photo voltaic cell. The cells are very small components that trap the sun’s rays and convert it into electricity. The consumer is able to utilize this electricity which is stored in batteries.

Is making a wind turbine the solution for everyone to be electricity self sufficient? Many parts of the country have sufficient consistent wind to generate sufficient electricity to serve everyone’s needs.

Find Out Free Advice On Home And Office Insulation And Draught Proofing To Save Money

Posted on 27th January 2011 in energy

You could be losing money in energy bills simply because of draughts. Home and office insulation and draught proofing to save money. They do this by reducing the amount of heat which is lost from your building. Ventilation in the home is good as it helps to keep the air clean. However these need to be controlled rather than letting air come and go as it pleases. Gaps produce draughts which you have no control over. This means the amount of energy needed to heat your home increases.

A little bit of ventilation in the home is great, if you can control the way it works. Draughts are not able to be managed and so you need to find a solution to this issue. You will find that you are paying far too much in order to create a warm environment.

There are plenty of common problems which can be addressed quite easily. Fireplaces, mail boxes and keyholes all let cold air in and warm air out. The more difficult places are cavities in walls and old frames around windows. These can all be corrected without a large expense.

By solving all of your insulation problems you will be using the most cost effective way of cutting down on wasted energy. You can even do a lot of the work yourself if you are used to D. I. Y and spend about half the money you would spend hiring a professional. You will need to follow instructions and buy the right tools and equipment.

The investment is realized within a couple of years. This is seen through cheaper energy bills such as gas, electric and oil. When you are insulating it is worth checking all the areas which need attention. Look for problem spots such as floor boarding, wall cavities, draughts, loft insulation and hot water tanks.

You can lower the temperature of your thermostat as the heat that you will be conserving means the home feels warmer without using as much energy. It is worth taking a look at your windows to see if they can be made to work more efficiently too. Single glass should be upgraded to double glazing if this is possible.

Small jobs can be easily performed by you. Cover your letter box, insulate your boiler and put up some strips of foam or brushes around the windows. For the larger jobs of filling in walls and lining your loft or attic space it might be more cost effective to hire the services of a draught proofing company.

Making Your Office Energy Efficient

Posted on 25th January 2011 in environment, Green Living

Offices are notoriously one of the worst performing environments when it comes to being environmentally friendly. The amount of waste that a modern office can produce is alarming due to their lack of paper recycling and heavy electricity use. Serviced office providers are now beginning to integrate environmentally friendly procedures to help reduce the carbon footprint that their buildings are producing.

The biggest problem that all offices face is their huge consumption of paper. Billions of tonnes of paper are used every year by offices and it is estimated that 90% of this paper is currently thrown away to landfill sites rather than being recycled. One of the most significant breakthroughs has been the advent of technology that reduces the need for paper. Many modern offices are taking advantage of cloud computing and electronic communication as well as storing important files on computer storage instead of filing cabinets.

However as we replace the paper with its technological equivalent there has also been a sharp rise in the amount of electricity that is being used by new electronic devices and the infrastructures needed to support them. Large offices make use of servers for files and many still use desktop PCs even though they waste much more energy than laptops do.

One of the most inefficient uses of energy that offices are guilty of is the use of fluorescent lighting instead of energy saving bulbs. Investing in a good set of energy saving light bulbs will significantly reduce the electricity used as well as providing massive savings to the electricity bill, just make sure to turn them off overnight.

Getting the whole office involved in becoming an environmentally friendly workplace improves the chances of reducing waste. Employees that help the company become green can be rewarded thanks to the amount of money the office will save when waste is reduced.

Solar Energy Facts and Tips

Posted on 20th January 2011 in solar power

There are many ways to produce electricity. There are power plants that use steam from the ground, burn coal or use fissionable material. Another way is through the energy from the sun that reaches the earth. Here are some solar energy facts.

John Herschel is thought to have used sunlight to cook his food during a trip to Africa. His simple solution, a box designed to collect and distribute heat, led to the discovery of other ways to harness the power of our nearest star. These are broken down into two broad categories, heating and electricity.

Heating can be anything from specialized greenhouses to water. Trapping sunlight is the goal. It can be one with glass, like a greenhouse, or black plastic, like a water heater. Humans have always used the sun in this way, but lately we have gotten better at doing it efficiently.

There are two ways that sunbeams are converted into the electrical energy that flows through the power lines. Photovoltaic cells, combined together to form panels, can be set in rows. The sunlight frees electrons from wires embedded in silicon gel, creating electricity directly.

Large power plants that use sunshine are actually just a variation on traditional steam plants. Instead of using a fossil fuel or nuclear energy to heat a liquid and create steam, they use solar collectors. The collectors are fashioned from giant mirrors that focus the light.

Solar power can be found wherever there is sunshine, but perhaps California can lay claim to the largest share. Out of 11 solar power plants in America, 9 of them are located in the Golden State. The last two built are each 80 megawatts in size, enough to power 160,000 homes for one hour, and are considered the largest such plants in the world.

Photovoltaic power stations can also grow to very large sizes and have become popular in Europe. Each semiconductor on a solar panel only produces a very small amount of electricity, but when you add them together and you can get a plant that produces megawatts of power. Two such plants opened in 2008, one in Germany and the other in Portugal.

Because it is available everywhere, solar power can be used for a large variety of tasks. Solar collectors can even heat your home! I will leave you with something to think about. Among the many solar energy facts, consider this: if we covered 4% of world desert lands with photovoltaic cells, we could produce enough power to completely meet current demand.

Solar Power to Heat Water

Posted on 15th January 2011 in solar power

Solar powered hot water heaters can be quite a cost effective way to create hot water for your house.

They may be utilised in just about any weather, plus the resource they will work with is sun energy which is 100 % free .

Just how do Solar Water Heating Systems Run

The solar water heating systems consist of storage tanks and also solar collectors.

You will find 2 types of solar water heating solutions: active, that have circulating pumps and also controls, as well as passive, which in turn don’t.

Solar water heaters need a well insulated storage tank you do not want to waste what we have collected.

Solar storage tanks offer an additional outlet and inlet linked to and from your collector.

In 2 tank systems, the solar hot water heater preheats water before it enters the conventional hot water heater.

In a single tank systems, the back up heater is combined with solar storage in a single tank.

Residential applications use three main types of solar collectors:

*Evacuated tube solar collectors

They feature parallel rows of transparent glass tubes. Each tube posesses a glass outer tube and metal absorber tube attached to a fin. The fin’s coating absorbs solar power but inhibits radiative heat loss. These collectors are employed more frequently for U.S. commercial applications.

* Integral collector storage systems

Also called ICS or batch systems, they feature one or more black tanks or tubes in the insulated, glazed box. Cold water first passes over the solar panel, which preheats the river. Water then continues onto the conventional backup hot water heater, providing a dependable method to obtain hot water. They must be installed only in parts of the world that have only a mild freeze for the reason that outdoor pipes could freeze in serious, cold weather.

* Flat plate collector

Glazed flat plate collectors are insulated, weather proofed boxes which contain a dark absorber plate under a number of glass or plastic (polymer) covers. Unglazed flat plate collectors typically useful for solar pool heating possess a dark absorber plate, made of metal or polymer, with out a cover or enclosure.

There are two varieties of active solar water heating systems:

* Direct circulation systems

Pumps distribute household water with the collectors and in to the home. They work nicely in climates where it rarely freezes.

* Indirect circulation systems

Pumps circulate a non freezing, heat transfer fluid through the collectors along with a heat exchanger. This heats the river that then flows to the home. They are popular in climates vulnerable to freezing temperatures.

Passive solar water heating systems are usually cheaper than active systems, but they’re usually much less efficient. However, passive systems can be more reliable and might stay longer. There’s two basic kinds of passive systems:

* Integral collector storage passive systems

These work most effectively in locations temperatures rarely fall below freezing. In addition they work nicely in households with significant daytime and evening domestic hot water needs.

* Thermosyphon systems

Water flows over the system when warm water rises as cooler water sinks. The collector have to be installed below the storage tank to ensure hot water will rise in the tank. Scalping strategies are reliable, but contractors must pay attention for the roof design due to the heavy storage tank. They are usually higher priced than integral collector storage passive systems.

Solar water heating systems almost always require a backup system for cloudy days and points during the increased demand. Conventional storage water heaters usually provide backup and may be part of the solar system package. A backup system can be area of the solar collector, for instance rooftop tanks with thermosyphon systems. Since an important collector storage system already stores domestic hot water along with collecting solar heat, it may be packaged which has a demand (tankless or instantaneous) water heater for backup.

For more info about solar water heating system components, understand the following information:

* Heat Exchangers for Solar Water Heating Systems

* Heat Transfer Fluids for Solar Water Heating Systems

Picking out a Solar Water Heater

Before buying and put in a solar water heating system, you want to do the following:

* Determine the proper system size

* Determine the system’s energy efficiency

* Look at the economics of your solar water heating system

* Evaluate your site’s solar resource

* Estimate and compare system costs