Hybrid solar lighting Reading Ielts Answers and Questions

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  • IELTS Reading Diagram completion 
  • IELTS Reading Sentence Completion
  • IELTS Reading summary completion

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IELTS Reading Passage: Hybrid solar lighting

Hybrid solar lighting 

A hybrid solar lighting system collects sunlight on a rooftop and directs it into a building via optical fibres. It runs on a 9-volt battery, and the energy savings, worker productivity, and health benefits are enormous.

It was developed initially by the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory and licensed to Sunlight Direct. It has already been used in a wide range of buildings in the United States, including universities, museums, department stores, and other specialised facilities. According to preliminary findings, replacing fluorescent lighting with hybrid solar can increase retail sales by up to 40%. Furthermore, undergraduates’ attention spans and academic achievement improve significantly in classrooms or lecture halls lit by hybrid solar. The technique is expected to become economically viable for both residential and commercial buildings in the near future.

It is estimated that 30% of the electricity consumed in the United States is used solely for lighting, and this figure rises to 45% for retailers. Obviously, if sunlight could be brought indoors, this figure could be drastically reduced. It is expected that hybrid solar lighting will not only save millions of dollars in energy costs, but will also be appealing due to its near-identical quality to daylight.

A solar collector made up of a 1,2 metre parabolic primary mirror concentrates light onto a secondary mirror with a unique multilayer coating that reflects only visible wavelengths, effectively removing ultraviolet and infrared wavelengths from the reflected light. This is necessary for reducing heat in the fibre optics, which would otherwise melt. The secondary mirror concentrates visible light onto a receiver module, where it is homogenised to ensure homogeneity before entering the fibre optic cable, which then illuminates the structure’s interior. In contrast to fluorescent lights, which require electricity, the hybrid solar system requires only one 9-volt battery to power the solar tracking system for one week.

Two motors are controlled by a GPS (global positioning system) microprocessor beneath the solar tracker mechanism. This pinpoints the sun’s exact position (based on latitude, longitude, date, and time) to one degree accuracy. The light that has accumulated shines brightly. Two of these fibres produce the same amount of light as a 60-watt light bulb, and a single bundle contains 127 fibres. What if the weather is threatening?

This is where hybrids enter the picture. By combining natural light with artificial light from fluorescent or incandescent lamps, the lighting fixtures create a hybrid luminaire. A photosensor in the room monitors the lighting intensity and makes automatic adjustments to keep the illumination constant.

A room lit entirely by fluorescence has an unnatural orange hue. Changing the lighting to be 80 percent solar and 20 percent fluorescent improves the ambiance significantly. It is expected that hybrid solar lighting will reduce the majority of shops’ energy costs by 60%, and retailers have been among the first to adopt the new technology due to the health benefits of natural lighting. According to studies, 20% of employees exposed to artificial light experience depression from Seasonal Affective Disorder symptoms (SAD). Furthermore, retailers with natural lighting sold 40% more merchandise than those with artificial lighting. According to research, biological rhythms and circadian rhythms are the key to having successful and productive employees. The introduction of natural light aids in the regulation of these biological processes.

Other scientists are so intrigued by the technology that they are looking into different applications, such as using UV light energy to heat water. However, there is one limitation to the technology: while plastic optical fibres are inexpensive, they have low transmittance and only extend about 15 metres from the solar collector. This is why solar hybrid lighting is now concentrated primarily on a structure’s top and main floors.

The potential savings in electricity and carbon dioxide emissions are significant. The units are designed to last twenty years, and as sales volume increases, the price should fall significantly. Individual households may have to wait a while before they can enjoy hybrid solar lighting, but in the meantime, there is a significant benefit in making natural and human-friendly environments for work and education.

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Hybrid Solar Lighting Reading Questions

Questions 1-5

Complete the diagram below.

Choose NO MORE THAN MORE WORDS from the passage for each answer. Write your answers for the questions 1-5 on your answer sheet.


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Questions  6-10

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer. Write your answers in boxes 6-10 on your answer sheet.

127 fibres = 1 bundle2
fibres = 60 Watt bulb

A 6._________measures the amount of light and a 7.__________mixes light from various sources to maintain consistent levels. Higher percentage of natural light, more appealing and biologically advantageous—fluorescence contributes to feelings of 8.___________, whereas natural or hybrid light increases productivity (and the sale of more 9.__________ in stores) by helping workers (and shoppers) feel good and maintain biological rhythms.
Plastic fibres are inexpensive, but the length from the 10.__________is a constraint.

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Questions 11-13

Complete the summary below with words taken from Reading Passage 1. Use NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 11-13 on your answer sheet.

A hybrid solar lighting system that uses 11._________ to illuminate buildings has been developed. Numerous advantages have been mentioned, such as an increase in 12. _____________and increased 13.__________ and educational achievement among students.

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Recommended Questions:

Renewable Energy IELTS Reading Question with Answer

Hybrid solar lighting reading answers

1.  Primary mirror
2. Secondary mirror
3. Receiver module
4. Solar tracker
5. Exact position
6. Photo sensor
7. Hybrid luminaire
8. Depression
9.  Merchandise
10. Solar collectors
11. Sunlight
12. Retail sales
13. Attention spans


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