If the entire Sahara Desert were covered with photovoltaic panels, what would the earth look like?


Global warming, the deterioration of the ecological environment, and the depletion of fossil energy are forcing human beings to use their brains to actively develop and utilize cleaner and more environmentally friendly renewable energy.

On the earth, when it comes to inexhaustible, safe and reliable energy sources, the first thing that comes to mind may be solar energy, and the place where solar energy can be drawn to the maximum is desert areas.

We might as well open a brain hole. Suppose that the Sahara Desert, the largest desert in the world, is covered with photovoltaic panels. What will happen to the earth?

Covering the Sahara desert with photovoltaic panels

Some scientists have calculated that by laying photovoltaic panels within 1% of the Sahara Desert, the electricity generated can meet the world’s energy needs.

Photovoltaic power plants are especially suitable for remote areas without electricity. They can generate electricity in nearby areas where electricity is used, reducing the construction of long-distance power grids and power loss on transmission lines; they will not be affected by energy crisis and fuel market instability.

In fact, solar photovoltaic power generation has already become one of the important ways to solve the energy supply and environmental crisis in many countries and regions in the world.

If photovoltaic panels are laid on the desert floor, it will double the rainfall in the area and increase the vegetation coverage by 20%. It not only solves the problem of energy supply, but also improves the coverage of green plants.

Although it is a good idea to generate enough energy in desert areas to drive the world, the video also points out that to achieve this vision, problems such as energy transmission, long-distance power loss, high cost, financing, geopolitics, etc. must also be considered.

It is believed that as the installation cost of photovoltaic power plants becomes lower and lower, and technologies such as UHV power transmission continue to mature, one day in the future, we can really see the Sahara Desert covered with photovoltaic panels, transmitting green power to all corners of the world.

How much electricity can a photovoltaic panel generate?

On the vast Gobi, the neatly arranged photovoltaic panels can’t see the head at a glance, like a “blue ocean”. Under the sunlight, the photovoltaic panels continuously convert the solar energy into electricity.

Different from the traditional photovoltaic power station, the photovoltaic panels of this power station can move “chasing light” like sunflowers to maximize the absorption of solar energy and greatly improve the power generation efficiency.

It is understood that each photovoltaic panel used in this power station has an area of nearly 2 square meters and a capacity of 330W. It generates 1.4 kWh of electricity every day and 510 kWh of electricity a year. In this way, the power station generates nearly 1.7 billion kWh of electricity every year, reducing the consumption of electricity every year. 556,700 tons of coal!


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