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Advances in Solar Electric Generation Technology

Jeffrey Havelin, PE

This course was intended to introduce the engineer towards some of the latest developments in solar electric generation, which could become the main fuel source of the future. The course will compare the various types of systems and explain the potential advantages and disadvantages of each system.

The public often associates flat panel photovoltaic (PV) with solar power, it is in fact thermal solar power plants, such as parabolic trough, power towers, and dish Stirling that can provide economic large-scale power generation today. With PV, electric power is produced by light directly in a semiconductor, while in thermal solar generation the heat of the sun is used to power an engine or turbine.

This course is based entirely on Fuel From the Sky: Solar Power’s Potential for Western Energy Supply July 2002 NREL/BK-550-32160 NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy’s premier laboratory for renewable energy & energy efficiency research, development, and deployment. This course includes a multiple-choice quiz at the end, which is designed to enhance the understanding of course materials. You will be quizzed on the attached document in its entirety.

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NY PE & PLS: You must choose courses that are technical in nature or related to matters of laws and ethics contributing to the health and welfare of the public. NY Board does not accept courses related to office management, risk management, leadership, marketing, accounting, financial planning, real estate, and basic CAD. Specific course topics that are on the borderline and are not acceptable by the NY Board have been noted under the course description on our website.