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Future of Solar Energy


Solar technology isn't new. It probably started some time in the 7th Century B.C., when people learned how to use glass and sunlight to light a fire. But today's sophisticated solar technologies include everything from solar-powered lights and buildings to solar-powered vehicles. Here is what we can expect in the future from solar technologies.

All our buildings will feature energy-efficient design, construction, and materials as well as renewable energy technologies. In effect, each building will both conserve energy and produce its own supply, to be one of a new generation of cost-effective "zero-energy buildings" that have no net annual need for nonrenewable energy.

In photovoltaic research and development, there will be more breakthroughs in new materials, cell designs, and novel approaches to product development. In a solar future, your mode of transportation—and even the clothes you wear—could produce clean, safe electric power.

With today's technology roadmaps to lead the way, concentrating solar power will be fully competitive with conventional power-generating technologies within a decade. Concentrating solar power, or solar thermal electricity, could harness enough of the sun's energy to provide large-scale, domestically secure, and environmentally friendly electricity, especially in the southwestern United States.

The enormous solar power potential of the Southwest—comparable in scale to the huge hydropower resource of the Northwest—will be realized. A desert area 10 miles by 15 miles could provide 20,000 megawatts of power, and the electricity needs of the entire United States could theoretically be met by a photovoltaic array within an area 100 miles on a side.

Within 10 years, photovoltaic power will be competitive in price with traditional sources of electricity.

Solar electricity will be used in an electrolysis process that separates the hydrogen and oxygen in water so the hydrogen can be used in fuel cells for transportation and in buildings.

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Question 1
What did people use to light a fire in early days?
A. LighterB. Glass and sunlight
C. Thunder lightD. Match light
Question 2
Which of the following solar technologies exists today?
A. Solar-powered farmingB. Solar-powered electrolysis process
C. Solar-powered lightsD. Hydropower
Question 3
The term used in the above paragraph, "photovoltaic research and development", refers to what kind of research and development?
A. Solar energyB. Water energy
C. Hydropower energyD. Fuel cells
Question 4
Which of the following is not mentioned as an expected breakthrough in photovoltaic research and development?
A. New materialsB. Cell designs
C. Novel approaches to product developmentD. Higher heat from the Sun
Question 5
Which area of the United States better suited to deploy solar technology?
A. SoutheastB. Northwest
C. SouthwestD. Northeast
Question 6
When does the author expect the solar power to be fully competitive with conventional power-generating technologies?
A. Within a yearB. Within five years
C. Within a centuryD. Within a decade
Question 7
How much electrical power can be generated from a desert area that is 20 miles by 30 miles in size? (hint: remember the key word desert area)
A. 10,000 megawattsB. 20,000 megawatts
C. 80,000 megawattsD. 40,000 megawatts
Question 8
What kind of process can be used to separate the hydrogen and oxygen in water?
A. Electrolysis processB. Electrostatic process
C. Photovoltaic powerD. Environmentally friendly process
Question 9
What kind of energy source is used in a fuel cell?
A. WaterB. Hydrogen
C. OxygenD. Gasoline
Question 10
Which of the following is a great advantage of the solar technology?
A. Fuel cells for transportation and in buildingsB. Clothes you wear can produce electricity
C. Environmentally friendly electricityD. Hydrogen friendly electricity
Free Worksheets From myTestBook.com ------ © myTestBook.com, Inc.
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