Intermittency is certainly a problem for
renewable energies like solar or wind. This
is one of many reasons why battery research
is so important.
Battery storage for solar is especially
important because peak electricity generation does
not always coincide with peak demand, and you
need some way to store the electricity generated.
Additionally, one must think about how to
transport solar energy across variable distances
to the consumer. Not all places have reliable
exposure to the sun, and not all of those places
necessarily have a high concentration of
While the amount of solar energy that hits the
surface of the earth is more than enough to meet
our current needs, there are many engineering
challenges to collect and transport that energy
that still exist.
Many of the hurdles facing renewable energy are
also beyond the scope of science. A huge
influencing factor is the competing market with
coal and natural gas. While a lot of progress
has been made to make solar cells cheaper, it
can't necessarily react to changes in supply and
demand for other energy forms. At the moment a
large contributor to the adoption of alternative
energies is via government subsidies, which
can offset the upfront costs of installing.
Click Here to return to the search form.