Slashdot Story On Solar Power
Slashdot is carrying a post on solar power growth, 45% per year according to the article. Discussion and comments are interesting as always.
The biggest advantage of solar power- the power availability curve closely follows power usage curve. Meaning the maximum power is available mid-day when maximum power is being used.
A big reason why we need coal fired power plants is that they can start cranking power at the flick of the switch, when we want most. But Solar power gives that to us naturally.
No moving parts, no emissions, light to energy year after year, 25-30 years. So why it has not caught up so far?
One big reason I think is the spread of information technology and electronic equipments. That industry is competing with solar industry for silicon, thus driving silicon prices high. At some point in future this conflict can turn into synergy (say somebody figures out how to extract silicon from electronic waste), and then Solar Energy will enter Moore’s law curve.