If you have ever been on any street anywhere in the city, you may encounter street lights. These public infrastructures are very convenient light sources, especially at night when there are not too many light sources around. These facilities can at least help you navigate when you walk, drive, and even commute. However, it is interesting that if you are in a different rural area or you can swear to see street lights in areas without any power grids. What is going on? In this case, you are likely to have encountered solar LED street lights. But do you know How Do Solar LED Street Lights Work?
However, is solar LED street light worth the investment? Solar LED lights are efficient, just like solar energy is very efficient, especially now that the world is promoting a more environmentally friendly energy system to avoid the adverse effects of climate change. According to World Energy, the global average annual solar radiation can generate energy equivalent to 140 cubic meters of natural gas, 200 kilograms of coal or a barrel of oil. This means that under the correct optimization process, solar energy can indeed replace the modern energy we have today.
For some, it can be a surprising sight to see solar-based street lamps on the streets, but they do have their perks. So, how exactly does a solar LED street light work?
Solar Street Lights: The Basics
If we are talking about the basics, then it is obvious that solar LED street lights use solar energy to work-however, it does not stop there. These street lights actually rely on photovoltaic cells, which are responsible for absorbing solar energy during the day. These batteries eventually convert solar energy into usable electrical energy to power the lights at night. This process is repeated every day, and it may even become a way to allow street lights to have sustainable energy when the sun rises.
What is perhaps interesting is that a solar LED street light is actually just one of the many classifications of solar street lights that exist out there. Alongside solar LED street lights, other kinds include:
Sodium vapor street lights use sodium as the main light source. Sodium stored in an excited state can release its stored light, thanks to solar panels absorbing sunlight during the day. The battery is used to receive the converted electrical energy-due to its rechargeable nature, the sodium-based street light does not require any wiring. This makes them suitable for squares, parks, residential areas, public places and streets.
Street lights based on induction technology use lights without filaments, which can prevent the lights from being damaged more quickly. This at least helps the lamp have a longer service life. Using this technology, the lamp can last up to 10,000 hours. Induction street lights have lower maintenance costs and generate less heat.
The Magic of Solar LED Street Lights
Solar LED street lights work with LED lights, such as light-emitting diode lights. Therefore, the LED lamp has a special compound that will emit light when the direct current of the source battery passes. LED street lights are very practical, because many companies have LED lights of different styles, shapes and sizes. Its durability also means that it can last as long as 50,000 hours. Since it requires very little current to work, it also tends to be much smaller than other lamps. Similarly, the solar panels required for solar LED street lights are much smaller, which can make their construction costs lower.
Solar LED street lights rely on the photovoltaic effect, which allows the solar cell to convert sunlight into usable electrical energy. This is done when negatively-charged electrons push solar energy into positively-charged spaces in the cells.
This process allows solar energy to be converted into electrons-into direct current. Similar to the working principle of electrical equipment, the wires on the solar cell are connected to the battery to transmit fresh direct current from the sunlight.
At night, the solar cell will stop the conversion process because the sunlight has disappeared. When there is not enough sunlight for conversion, the photoreceptor will help turn off the solar cell. At this time, the battery will start to supply power to the LED lights through other lines.
With the above, you should now have a basic understanding of the working principle of solar LED street lights, especially in areas without electricity. The portability and environmental protection of solar LED street lights can make them a sufficient substitute for ordinary street lights, and may be a good choice for areas without power grids.
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