Solar Energy

A Solar Energy Diagram: From Dawn till Dusk

A Solar Energy Diagram: From Dusk till Dawn

A Solar Energy Diagram: Why and What is Solar Energy? And how much? How can we use it?

Let me start by stating that I am still in awe: It’s so impressive!

Solar Energy is created by the biggest reactor we knew until a few decades ago (today modern astronomy shows that some of our little green aliens we know from TV have even much bigger suns).

To make things clear: Without our beloved sun, there would be absolutely no life in this part of the milky way, our solar system. All planets, if they existed at all, were nothing more than huge ice blocks.

But before we dig deeper into the solar energy and earth diagram I want to introduce to two other articles concerning how Solar power can be harnessed today here on planet earth:

In an active and a passive way:

How is Solar Energy used ActiveHow is Solar Energy used actively or How is Solar Energy used ActiveHow is Solar Energy used passively

The Power source: Solar Energy Diagram

solar energy diagram
Solar Energy in production Courtesy NASA

The sun is about 109 times as big as our earth and has a mass of about 330.000 times the earth. She accounts for 99.89 percent of all the mass in our whole solar system.

That’s huge, folks!

The surface temperature is about 5,505 °C (9,941 °F) and is literally the powerhouse in our solar system.

Look above at this graphic how tiny our beautiful planet is in comparison.

The sun’s energy and our “living daylights” are generated by nuclear fusion of hydrogen into helium.

solar energy diagram
The sun is the powerhouse of our solar system fusing 600 million tons of hydrogen per second Courtesy NASA

Each second up to 600 million tons of hydrogen are fused and turned to energy. And a tiny part of that energy reaches our planet earth.

And this tiny part reaching us at all alone is responsible for nearly all live and motion on this planet. The sun is so far away that it takes the radiation and light (=energy) over 8 minutes to reach us.

Once this energy reaches our planet, about 30 % of it is reflected back into space by our atmosphere.

solar energy diagram solar influence
Solar Energy Influence on our Earth Courtesy Mrshaba/wikimediacommons

Over time, this energy is then radiated back into space.

The more energy of that potential we can catch, the more we can use for our needs.

We can use the indirect effects of the sun’s power… the wind (see “what is wind energy“), but also we can actively and passively use the solar energy directly.

One way is to let the sun’s rays react with the materials in solar cells, by that creating electricity. This is an active use of solar energy and allows you to power whatever can be powered with an electric plug.

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