|Solar Power panel|
The crux of his argument was, firstly, the cost of nuclear power is lower than the cost of solar power.
Secondly, according to Ahmad Tajuddin, "even if we cover the whole of Peninsular Malaysia with solar panels, it is still not enough" to fulfil energy demand.
|House with Solar Power panel roofing|
Solar panels convert sunlight directly to electricity. Taking the power input from the sun to be 200 watts per sq m (average data for Kuala Lumpur, source: Nasa), and assuming the conversion efficiency is 10 per cent, the power output of the solar panels, if they cover the whole of Peninsular Malaysia, is about two million megawatts (Mw).
|Solar Energy Generator field|
Thus, in principle, we can meet our energy demand with solar panels alone, but this method is obviously not practical.
However, it is possible for solar power to contribute significantly to the total power production capacity.
For example, to produce 2,000Mw of power using solar panels, it would require 100 sq km of land, if 10 per cent efficiency is again assumed. A much smaller area would be needed if cutting-edge solar cells with efficiency of much greater than 10 per cent were used.
If Concentrated Solar Power (CSP) technology is used instead of solar panels, the land area required would also be significantly smaller for the same power output.
In the CSP method, sunlight is concentrated using a system of mirrors or lenses to produce heat to drive a turbine in order to generate electricity.
Secondly, the EC chairman's first claim about costs may be true now.
However, the cost of electricity produced using either solar panels or CSP is declining and is expected to be competitive with the cost of electricity produced using fossil fuels in the near future (source: Greenpeace).
Read more: Nuclear over solar http://www.nst.com.my/nst/articles/03lannay-2/Article#ixzz1IPUsOO1Q