Off-Grid Areas Going Solar: Giving Renewable Energy a Chance

Solar Power in Western AustraliaMany homeowners in Australia are now going for solar power. This is becoming very popular because of the benefits it provides.

In rural areas, however, they are having quite a hard time getting their electricity running because they are off the grid. But now, they have the opportunity of trying solar power systems for themselves.

Living Off the Grid with Solar Power

Farmers in the south of WA have put up with inconsistent supplies of electricity for many years and now they are giving solar power a try.

After experiencing fluctuations year after year, especially during the summer, some of them resorted to purchasing power generators to for backup because the fluctuations interfered with their businesses and daily activities. Shelling out more and more money seemed to be normal for them just so they can ensure the safety of their equipment against unexpected power outages.

WA’s Liberal-National Government decided to invest in technology that improves the economics of renewable energy instead of providing an expensive network of poles and wires that don’t seem to reach those who are off the grid.

Solar Trial Kicks Off in Rural WA

A $4 million pilot project conducted in WA aims to find out how they can deliver electricity to rural and remote consumers. The trial would include new stand-alone electrical systems composed of solar panels, backup diesel generation, and battery storage.

Over the course of a year, participants will document their experiences of having their electricity supplied by stand-alone systems instead of through conventional wires and poles.

Advancements in Harvesting Solar Energy

Recently, researchers discovered a “quantum-confined band gap narrowing mechanism”, which may one-day open doors for a new class of composite materials used in optoelectronics and light harvesting. According to Dr. Qin Li, an Associate Professor in the Environmental Engineering and Queensland Micro- and Nanotechnology Centre, application of this mechanism would include water purification by sunlight and high efficiency paintable solar cells.

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Instead of thinking of going green and saving the environment, think of being able to provide electricity to those areas off the grid and how they will be able to enjoy the perks of having an efficient and reliable supply of electricity. Apart from these, solar power is a secure investment. Their experience with other utility companies was bad, as they weren’t providing them with enough energy, which led to fluctuating power surges and prices.