How do solar panels work? – Richard Komp

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The Earth intercepts a lot of solar power: 173,000 terawatts. That’s 10,000 times more power than the planet’s population uses. So is it possible that one day the world could be completely reliant on solar energy? Richard Komp examines how solar panels convert solar energy to electrical energy.

Lesson by Richard Komp, animation by Globizco.


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  1. There are much more. Solar cells are not made of eco-friendly material and not to mention the battery it needed to store the energy…. There are reasons that solar cells are not the main source. It is the first time I say something like that, but don’t only blame the politics this time…

  2. I live in Saudi Arabia and I've tried installing solar panels a few times, no one ever does a good job so far I've installed them 3 times none of them did any visible help so…….

  3. Anyone can explain me why the Globe Earth receives different levels os solar energy when NASA says the Sun is 93 million miles away. The sun light should be equal considering a circumference of merely 25 thousand miles, so…… conclusion: the Sun IS NOT that far away. The Sun is a pretty local light source. Thats the rational explanation.

  4. Shrugged off the space issue rather quickly. While powering a home with panels on the roof uses space that is freely available, places like deserts are eco systems which can be recovered and made green to produce needed food for consumption and trees for carbon absorption.

  5. Me in 1970… happy about our future solar world. Me in 2019… investigates powering a simple space heater, and realizing a $10000 investment with banks of wasteful batteries that only last about 5 years are needed. So ya, blame big oil or governments but the reality is scientists and industry can cause innovation on their own. Quit feeding the myth that we could be green if only some people would let it happen. It'll happen naturally if it does.

  6. Great video! I have been looking at the best options for solar panels for a small back yard and this video definitely helped me decide. Another video that is helpful for anyone interested in purchasing solar panels is @t

  7. Everyday 173,000 terawatts of solar energy comes down to Earth. That’s 10,000 times the amount of power our planet’s population is currently using. Could we one day power our lives using only solar energy? In this Ted Ed video, Richard Komp explains how solar panels convert solar energy to electrical energy.

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