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I am a grade six student at Sir William Osler elementary, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. This school term I will be conducting a scientific experiment for my class science fair. The topic I have selected is regarding the productivity of solar panels under different so-called “filters” of light. Such filters are transparent plastic sheets colored red, yellow, and blue. In my current project, I will be testing the productivity of my solar cells under such circumstances. The experiment will be carried out in 10 to 15 trials in the next three weeks.

I am writing this letter of inquiry in hope that I may have the opportunity to ask you several questions pertaining to my project as I have found it is in your area of expertise.

What is your personal opinion on solar panel technology becoming a mainstream power option? Would you suggest a junction or hybrid between renewable energy industries or is that just a fantasy?

Question Date: 2017-10-15
Answer 1:

I think solar energy can become an important part of our energy portfolio. In fact a hybrid system that you suggest with other renewable energy industries ​is probably the most practical way of weaning our economy off of fossil fuels. Furthermore, we'll need a diverse portfolio just due to the geographic diversity in the U.S. Solar energy won't be the panacea to all our energy woes, but it has the potential to play a large part.

However, this change will most likely be gradual. Much of our infrastructure is built for a fossil fuel economy- just think of all the gas stations and power plants built just to get fuel to you as the consumer.

​We'll need the collective cooperation of government and industry to realize a bigger role for solar cells. ​

Hope this helps,

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