The Solar Myth Busters

We bust here a few myths that throw a false shadow on the solar industry...

MYTH 1: "Hot air is worthless".
VERY WRONG! All energy used now (except nuclear, hydro and PV) is produced by burning fossil fuels to heat the air. That hot air is then used for boilers or other processes. We can surely say that our present civilisation is based on hot air, not "hot air". So economical solar air heating is very valuable.

MYTH 2: "Replacing fossil fuels with renewable energy would mean loss of jobs and increased unemployment".
WRONG! Fossil fuel jobs are very efficient: they can easily produce energy. To obtain the same amount of clean energy from renewable energies (wind, solar, hydro) we need more workers than the fossil fuel industries. So replacing fossil fuels with renewables actually increases the number of available jobs, does not decrease it. Workers would just learn the clean energy trades, which is interesting.

MYTH 3: "Solar energy cannot replace fossil fuels because the sun is not shining all time"
USUALLY WRONG In some applications we can either store energy obtained from the sun, or store product processed during sunlight hours. However, in this stage of technology we need fossil fuels because we cannot produce all the energy needed from solar.

MYTH 4: "It is not enough solar energy in countries with temperate climate".
PARTIALLY WRONG While it is true that in those countries less energy can be provided from solar, the price at which solar heat can be obtained is more relevant than the proportion of solar from total. However, a certain difference is between solar devices without concentration of radiation that can work in cloudy sky conditions, while the solar devices with concentration of radiation (mirrors, lens) will not work without direct sunshine. So this myth is true for systems with concentration of radiation, but it is not true for economical systems without concentration of radiation. Again, supplementation with fossil fuels is still necessary in most applications.

MYTH 5: "Buy our products which produce free solar energy"
WRONG! This is not true, although most sellers try to deceive you. Solar radiation is coming free onto the Earth, but the means to transform it into something useful are expensive. Solar radiation is electromagnetic radiation, it is not heat. Only an interposed body transforms it into something useful. Let us just discuss here the versions:

  • Solar heating of your body. It is the simplest; just take off your clothes and sunbathe. It is free as time as 1) does not stop you from doing something useful (payable) with your time; 2) did not require you to go to that place (ex driving to the beach which is expensive) and 3) does not cost you later in the form of skin cancer.
  • Solar heating of your body while wearing clothes. It is probably the cheapest and safest way of using solar energy; however clothes do cost, so it is not free. Please consider that clothes are ruined by UV... Actually, under some strong sunshine you may want to be cooled...
  • Solar water heating or solar air (space) heating or solar drying are not free because of the capital and running costs of those devices. If properly calculated, it will be observed that MOST existing solar heaters are unneconomical (they cost their users more money than using conventional heating). Please be weary and do proper economical calculation. Q Solar is one of the very few companies which has economical products, but neither ours are FREE.