Utilising non-conventional sources of energy is made simple in our advancing world with the use of innovative technology but it surely is a fairly complex science. Solar energy uses and processes the sun's power to harness usable energy forms. The rays of the sun carry along with them the required radiation which gets converted to other types of energy. Every sun ray carries some amount of electromagnetic radiation in it. At KLK Ventures the solar services that are provided are well versed in solar panels that make use of solar radiation phenomena and the solar constant as utilized in the solar panel business.

t's crucial to understand the workings of this energy-producing process. Hence, for those interested in adopting this clean and green renewable source, it becomes even more important to know the estimated solar radiation that will be received. Solar Constant becomes a good way to explain this scientific phenomenon.

Understanding the term Solar Constant

Solar constant in simple terms is the amount of solar energy a given piece of area is receiving at a distance of 1 Astronomical Unit (roughly the distance from sun to Earth, i.e. the distance that ray will travel to reach our green planet) from the sun. The factors of area and time are also often considered. The rays of the sun or light for that matter, depict both electrical and magnetic properties. Since solar rays are carriers of electromagnetic radiation, essentially what solar constant is measuring is the flux density of these radiations, the Flux being anything that passes through a surface and its concentration when measured is the flux density.

The solar constant is often denoted by the notation of GSC. However, unlike what we all think by hearing the word "constant", it isn't exactly true for this case. Unlike the constants used in physics or maths, it is more like an average of values. These values measured at different times of the year give slightly different results because the distance from the sun doesn't remain fixed throughout. The current average value of the solar Constant is 1.361 kilowatts per square metre at the solar minimum and 1.362 kilowatts per square metre at the solar maximum. Since our environment at Earth's surface is affected by factors like air resistance, the solar Constant is measured generally by the satellites orbiting our planet.

Variation in Solar Constant:

The value of the solar constant experiences a slight variation in its measurement contrary to it otherwise being named ‘constant’. However, the variation is something of a natural phenomenon that takes place because of the two major bodies that are involved in the process: the Sun and the Earth. That being the more simplified version of putting the variation forward, however, it depends on certain features of the two bodies involved- the sun’s luminosity besides the distance between the two bodies and the earth’s distinct rotation around the sun. Both these points can be understood as explained below:

How does the Sun's Luminosity cause variation in the value of the solar constant?

  • The sun’s luminosity is presented to be 3.86 x 10^26 watts however only some of this is captured by the earth’s surface that comes to the equal of 0.000000045%. The energy that is utilised in the solar energy capturing and harvesting process approximates 1370 watts per square metre of the earth’s surface. The distance between the two bodies contributes to this difference.
  • Another smaller variation that comes into play is in the total luminosity of the sun which is believed by various researchers to have changed by about 1% in the past 30 years. The variation has been measured abroad using radiometers over the years through numerous satellites. The power yield of the sun’s energy is believed to be varying which affects the solar constant over vast gap years as it is believed to be increasing 10% every billion years. 

How Does Earth's Orbit Affect Variation in Solar Constant?

  • As generally all are aware the Earth is present in the solar system at a slight tilt in its centre that changes over time, along with this tilt the consequential factor is the characteristic elliptical orbit that the Earth performs around the sun.
  • The solar constant’s value varies -+3% because of the elliptical orbit of the earth. The distance of the earth also varies in this factor as when in January’s first week the distance is lesser and smaller and the distance is larger in July’s first week affects the solar radiation received during these times. 

How does Solar Constant Become Important?

  • The solar constant is generally important for all individuals conscious about the environmental health of the planet as it measures the solar radiation and is an important factor that affects the climate of the planet. KLK ventures thus provide a green and resourceful installation of solar solutions to minimize any harm to the environment.
  • A solar Constant proves of value for measuring the quantity of radiation that will reach the earth's surface. In easy words, it's the rate of electromagnetic radiation available in 1 square metre of surfaces like solar panels.
  • It provides us with the intensity of energy received as raw material to our device per second. As stated above, the power of the sun that we have with us to process is close to 1360 watts per metre square per second.
  • It proves to be of importance for solar panel devices as one can be sure of the amount and value of solar energy that is captured and we at KLK Ventures facilitate solar solution installations that efficiently utilize these phenomena in its solar panel business.
  • Apart from solar panels, it can also be used to calculate radiation pressure.
  • It is an important value for worldwide energy equilibrium and climate and temperature changes.

Solar constant is thus an important element in the whole process of coming to understand solar energy and its usage. It is a value that makes one aware of the fundamental feature of devices that use the solar energy conversion principle as it defines the solar radiation measurement in such devices as solar panels and thereby our company KLK Ventures aims at aiding all enthusiasts of a greener and eco-friendly world by providing solar solutions and services that ethically contribute to environmentally safer ways of energy usage to its customers that come in with the same notions and beliefs thus providing more than just a business but a community that prioritizes the planet’s health.