What is Solar, Hydro, and Wind?

Moksha D -

Hello everyone! This past week I have been focused on the first stage of my project – What are the main types of renewable energy? SRP, Salt River Project, focuses on solar, hydro, and wind.

Solar, as understood in the name, is the energy that comes from the sun. In Phoenix, it’s the blazing star that shines 300 days out of the year and because of that, it is probably one of the easiest ways for local utility companies to harness renewable energy. This notion has been supported through solar panels on residential roofs and solar farms in the surrounding areas of the city. The solar energy enters these panels in the DC (Direct Current) form which is the type in the laptop or phone you are reading this on. It then gets converted to the AC (Alternating Current) form which is the type in the building you are sitting in right now where current and voltage change direction every half cycle. 

If you have ever driven through Nevada, your family probably took a pit stop at the Hoover Dam to admire how large it is. Now you know that this sightseeing spot falls under the next pillar of renewable energy; hydro. 

A dam needs an upper reservoir, where you stand when looking into the Hoover Dam, and a lower reservoir, the deep bottom of the dam that you can barely see. The height determines the force of the water. The higher the upper reservoir is, the higher the force of water is coming out. This water will then rotate a water turbine, the water turbine rotates a generator, and the generator generates electricity which gives surrounding areas power.

When taking a road trip from Arizona to California, those large white looking fans on sticks that sit in fields are wind turbines. The energy from the blowing wind turns the propeller-like blades around a rotor which is connected to a shaft that spins a generator to generate electricity. It is stored in the DC form and then converted to AC to provide electricity and power to facilities in safe ways that will not cause houses to implode because of too high of a voltage or current load.

Thank you for reading. Till next time!


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    Hi Moksha, so interesting to learn about the science behind renewable energy in Phoenix. I am interested to learn more about what you are doing on-site. I am also interested in learning more about how the energy is stored? Can't wait to learn more!
    Hi Ms. Bennett! On site this week, I was mainly discussing the main types of renewable energy that SRP uses and why they use these. In the upcoming weeks, I will be visiting battery sites where the energy stored in various forms.
    Dishita Kolla
    Hey Moksha! I found your post very informative! I'm curious to hear your thoughts on what other options might be available in our area.

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