Solar power is often thought of as a modern amenity. While it’s true that it’s modernizing electrical resources, solar power has been around for centuries. To better understand the history of this impressive resource, it’s best to start from the very beginning.

  • It’s estimated that humans first used solar energy during the 7th century. Using large magnifying glasses, many civilizations used to light fires and create light by channeling the sunlight.
  • Sunrooms were also popular during this time, where the light of the sun was directed to a particular area to create warmth and heat.
  • During the 18th and 19th centuries, scientists created methods for sailors to use sunlight in order to power ovens during long voyages.
  • Solar panels were invented in 1954. Bell Lab scientists Daryl Chapin, Calvin Fuller, and Gerald Pearson are credited for the design of the silicon solar panel. They created the first ever solar cell that could convert sunlight into energy with 4% efficiency.