Since the 60’s the world’s population has been steadily increasing along with the development of the third word countries the world economy has also grown. Though beneficial such a growth has also burdened the energy supply as the demand more importantly, electricity keeps increasing. In our modern world and all its technology electricity has become indispensable. Throughout the 20th century fossil fuels like coal and oil have been the prime resources to produce electricity in power plants. As early as the 70’s we started to realize that fossil fuels were not limitless, along with that its exploitation and usage were having irreversible damaging effects upon the environment and our lives. Research and innovative thinking has help moved towards the development of safer and cleaner energy sources. One obvious and very promising energy sources is solar radiation; by harnessing the sun’s energy we can generate electrical energy for our daily needs. As a matter of fact, one measly hour of the sun’s energy hitting this planet is equivalent to the energy consumption of the entire human population for one year. With the availability of such considerable and boundless energy source, a new type of construction which encompasses energy conservation and self sustaining energy production is gaining popularity; it’s the solar cell homes.
For decades solar panels have been used as an alternative to produce electricity when conventionally produced power was not available. During the 70’s energy crisis it was prophesized that solar power sever our dependence on fossil fuels. However the early solar panels were not very efficient especially during cloudy or overcast sky. Recently with some large industries investing in research, which has brought about improvement in this technology, and advocacy for cleaner energy resources had inspired the government to back alternative soar energy use. These events resulted is more efficient, cheaper commercialized solar panels production; thus making this technology more accessible to households and small scale industries.
With the eco-friendly homes movement in European countries like Germany, Denmark and Norway it is not surprising to see integration of solar panel as a households’ structures in new construction. Friedrich, Germany, the world’s premiere eco-friendly district is an excellent example of this trend. There a community of five thousand citizens lives in solar cell homes, specially designed to maximize sun exposure on the rooftops, with solar panels or arrays as an integral part of the rooftops. They harness the sun’s energy for all the heating and electrical need of the hose; hence providing an eco-friendly solution to one of the most controversial problem of our time. Mumbai, India, is another example of big cities to have joined the green trend. Other prominent countries are also rallying to the idea as well, and governments are strongly advocating utilization of solar panel. Moreover, since the solar energy utilization technology is gaining popularity and is proving its merit, more and more commercial industries are currently investing its production. With rapid growth in this technological sector and mass production, prices are going down; average households can now invest in solar panels and reaps its long term benefits. Solar cell homes are rapidly fitting the new standard in eco-friendly building integration and construction. Some governments are even making it easier by offering pecuniary and tax incentive to this type of construction.
Solar cell homes are just the natural outcome of eco-friendly consciousness as we can see the effect of carbon dioxide pollution and opt to protect the planet from further destruction. Although at present, solar panel installations are not quite cheap, the installation cost can be recovered in five to six years, it is a small effort considering the damage we have already inflicted upon the Earth. Moreover, taking into account the lasting non impact foot print of alternative energy, the benefits outweigh that of burning fossil fuel. Let us all make a small effort and soon we may stop digging the earth for small packets of fossil fuels. The answer is looking up to the sky for a brighter future. As long as the Sun will orbit planet Earth, solar energy will be infinite. A solar cell home is just a small step in the right direction.