Air pollution reduces India’s solar energy

Air pollution reduces India’s solar energy

The temple of the sun in Maharashtra, India. Pollution could affect the earth’s ability to achieve its goal of 100 gigawatts of solar power, says new research. Available: Thomas Lloyd Group (,_India,_67.2-MWp_DC.jpg), CC BY-SA 4.0 ( -sa/4.0 / deed.en)

Hopes for India to achieve the goal of generating 100 gigawatts of solar power by 2022 have been dashed due to the high level of air pollution.

Air pollution reduces the sun’s power in two main ways: by burning and scattering the sun’s rays and polluting the solar panels, Sagnik said. Dey, associate professor at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi.

A study conducted by IIT Delhi and published in March Community research papers, Counting between 2001 and 2018, India lost 29 percent of its solar energy due to air pollution – an annual loss of US $ 835 million. In March this year, India only had half the 50 gigawatts of solar power installed, according to research group Mercom India.

“Simply put, aerosols, which contain good odors, dust, mist and fumes released into the air, significantly reduce solar radiation in what we call and the ‘atmospheric attenuation effect,’ ”Dey, author of the study, told SciDev. Upena. “This has to be taken into account when working on large solar energy projects.”

Such projects, Dey said, cannot account for the “dust effect” of aerosols deposited on solar panels, preventing solar radiation from reaching photovoltaic cells. . “Given the increase in air pollution over South Asia, both the effects and mitigation measures taken need to be addressed to maximize the benefits from solar power generation,” he said. his.

In highly polluted areas, particulate matter can dissipate more than 50 percent of solar photovoltaic power, much of which is the source of panel dust, according to a preliminary study. . An aerosol in the air also acts on the sun’s power by increasing the cloud cover and absorbing rain that can wash away the particles.

According to Bhupendra Das, an environmental researcher at Nepal’s Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu, and chair of Nepal Energy and Environmental Development Services, acid rain can damage electrical equipment and facilities, adding to maintenance costs.

Acid rain is caused by pollutants such as sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, which are released through the emissions of businesses and vehicles, rise high in the air and combine with water, oxygen. and other factors that produce corrosive water droplets before falling such as rain.

“Reducing air pollution actually reduces smogginess which can improve solar power performance, and experimental studies show that pollutants have a longer lifespan and are prevented. aerosols in the rain, ”Das told SciDev.Net. “However, it’s good to remember that there are many other factors related to pollution than air pollution.”

The IIT Delhi study provides a set of measures if it can be implemented to help the Indian government achieve its solar energy goals. Some of these panels are well -sealed to make good use of solar radiation. The panels do not collect aerosol deposits as easily as panels set on the level.

Articulated panels fitted with sun -resistant methods are more expensive than solid panels but are more effective in preventing the accumulation of aerosol deposits. All settings, however, are affected by atmospheric attenuation, the study said.

According to the study, the best way to increase solar energy is to effectively implement government measures such as the National Clean Air Program launched in 2019 with the aim of reducing emissions. Good smell (PM).2.5) a retention by 20 to 30 percent by 2024 relative to the 2017 levels.

Reducing air pollution will “accelerate India’s progress to achieve its solar energy goal at a minimum of input, avoiding new investments to increase solar energy technology. , ”the study said.

Swiss IQAir reports global air quality for 2021 as Northern India falls to a fraction of more than the WHO standard of 10 micrograms per cubic meter for seven particulate matter. and 10 times.

The IQAir report ranked New Delhi the most polluted city in the world for the fourth time in a row and ranked 34 other Indian cities among the most polluted urban centers in the world. .

IIT Delhi said the study was the first to quantify the impact of pollution on solar power in India, with the first studies focusing on the negative effects of air quality on the environment. public health and agricultural production.

‘Bright spot’ during COVID-19: More power from solar panels to improve air purification

More information:
Sushovan Ghosh et al, Air Cleaner will increase India’s annual solar energy production by 6-28 TWh, Community research papers (2022). DOI: 10.1088 / 1748-9326 / ac5d9a

Xiaoyuan Li et al, Global reduction of solar energy consumption due to aerosols and dust particles, Sustaining Nature (2020). DOI: 10.1038 / s41893-020-0553-2

Provided by SciDev.Net

Directions: Pollution reduces India’s solar energy (2022, March 31) Retrieved 31 March 2022 from -solar.html

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