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First Uses of Solar Power

Vanguard 1 Satellite
Solar power was first used in space applications. In 1958 the Vanguard 1 satellite used six small solar cells to generate electricity to allow it to continue transmitting after its chemical battery was emptied. its small suite of instruments provided valuable information on Earth’s temperature ranges, size, shape and air density.

The Vanguard 1 was a pioneer of solar power
The success of Vanguard 1′s use of solar power resulted in solar cells being used by Russian and American satellites. By the late 1960s photovoltaics had become a standard source of power for satellites.

Increasing production of photovoltaic solar panels in the 1970s led to the early adaptation of solar power in off grid locations like mines, oil rigs, marine and telecommunication applications.

Today solar energy is becoming more prevalent as fossil fuels are becoming less viable and pressure is on to explore renewable energy sources. One of the biggest setbacks with solar energy is the initial high costs of installation but as research and development is continuing these costs will drop and solar energy applications will continue to increase.

At the turn of 2010 solar photovoltaics are generating power in over 100 countries and the technology is being established as the fastest growing renewable power generation in the world.
source: internet