02 Nov, 2022
Sun is a vital source of energy provider in our lives and modern technology has expanded the role of the sun by discoursing or making us available with solar energy and its various applications or uses in the agricultural field.
Solar energy or the sun’s energy is a renewable source of energy that can be utilized judiciously to make its uses in agriculture and carry out efficient farming throughout.
One of the largest overhead expenses in agriculture is energy, especially for growers that use greenhouses. Fossil fuels and other conventional energy sources are bad for the environment and have an impact on agriculture. As a result, using solar energy in agriculture reduces expenses and benefits the environment.
Additionally, as the supply of fossil fuels is diminishing, reliance on them is unsustainable. Solar energy is derived from an unending supply. We're going to examine how solar energy is used in agriculture.
The utilization of solar energy has the potential to be a game-changing development for the agricultural industry, adding value in a variety of ways such as conserving valuable water resources, lowering reliance on the grid, lowering long-term power costs, and even providing additional sources of income.
Even though solar energy has been used in the agricultural sector since the dawn of civilization, there is an increase in demand for its use in broader applications across several sectors.
Following are the uses or the application of solar energy in agricultural activities:
Solar water pumps are essential in many locations where the availability of electric power is uncertain or nonexistent. Farmers may save countless hours of labor by using solar pumps to transport water from canals and reservoirs to their land.
Here, solar panels are used to capture solar energy. DC electricity is then provided to the power grid or stored in batteries using inverters. The pumps that supply water will be operated effectively using this power.
2. Solar energy is used for Refrigeration
Agriculture-based food products require refrigeration and require a lot of energy to process and preserve. Particularly in remote locations with little to no access to an electrical grid, solar energy for cooling is more practical. Solar energy can be used efficiently in space cooling or a combination of heating and cooling, improving the shelf life of agricultural products with further development and applications.
3. Solar energy can be used as a Dryer
The open-air drying of agricultural products including livestock, produce, and fruits and vegetables resulted in a higher loss rate of perishables. As opposed to this, using solar thermal energy after a harvest allows for longer storage because it requires less time and is not affected by the elements. Farmers can transfer them in advance if the markets are not fully developed.
Direct, indirect, and hybrid drying modes are among the various varieties of solar dryers. A solar box dryer is used for direct drying, a solar cabinet dryer is used for indirect drying, and a hybrid solar/biomass cabinet dryer is used for mixed or hybrid drying.
The heating of greenhouses is another application for which farmers use solar energy in agriculture. Commercial greenhouses often use sunlight for lighting purposes alone, not for heating. For the most part, they rely on oil and gases to keep the temperatures necessary for plant growth.
Heat and light are produced by solar greenhouse heating systems. A solar mass is used in a solar greenhouse to gather and store energy. Additionally, it has insulation, which keeps heat in during chilly days and nights.
5. Generation of electricity with the help of solar energy
Solar panels are an excellent choice because some farms are situated in such regions where the generation of electricity is not possible and here comes the role of solar energy for lighting the farm and household appliances, most of these farms have solar panels installed. They are helpful for many other farm tasks, including automated feeding, opening gates, and electric fence.
6. Solar-powered tractors
Tractors perform innumerable tasks well along p with the aid of a wide range of tools and equipment, converting agriculture farming into agro-industry. Tractors typically utilize oil to operate, which raises the cost of farming and contributes to air pollution by releasing carbon dioxide during combustion. Tractors driven by the sun have become a viable choice since they can operate during the day using solar energy and can operate at night using energy stored in batteries.
Concluding on to, Technology in agriculture is evolving quickly. Farm equipment, farm structures, and production facilities are all continually getting better. For the facilities to operate effectively and without hiccups, more affordable and superior energy sources are required. These energy sources are safe, risk-free, and do not affect either people or the environment.
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