Light Energy

What is the luminous energy

Light energy is the energy generated and carried by light waves. When light travels, it can act as an electromagnetic wave or as a particle, since it can interact with other matter. Those particles are called photons.

The lumen is the unit of study of light energy that determines the light energy during a period, as well as the variable sensitivity of the eye with respect to light waves. Light energy travels through waves and at the speed of light, therefore it cannot be stored.

The sun is the main source of light that exists and transmits a significant amount of light energy capable of maintaining the development of life on planet Earth. However, there are other sources of light energy, such as fire or laser beams.

The electromagnetic waves emitted by light energy are detected by the sense of the visit; however, there are ultraviolet waves, which are not visible and which also transmit energy, but which are harmful to the health of living beings.

types of light energy

It can be said that there are two types of light energy: natural light energy and artificial light energy.

  • Natural light energy: It is the one that is transmitted by the sun.
  • Artificial light energy: It is the one that is generated through the use or application of other energies, for example, electrical energy, through which light bulbs can generate light energy.
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Advantages and disadvantages of light energy

Light energy generates a certain number of advantages and disadvantages depending on its use and purpose.


  • The light energy that comes from the sun is free and its energy source is inexhaustible.
  • Light energy released from the sun is not polluting.
  • Various techniques have been generated to produce electrical energy through the light energy generated by sunlight.
  • Plant and animal life on Earth occurs in large percentage thanks to the positive effects that the light energy of the sun generates in the cycle of life.
  • Through light energy, various activities of daily life can be carried out through the use of various devices that generate light in the dark or transmit images or content such as computers or mobile phones.

See also Life Cycle.


  • To make large-scale use of the light energy generated by the sun, it is necessary to invest significant amounts of money to develop solar panels that absorb solar energy.
  • Large tracts of land must be occupied to place the solar panels.
  • Solar radiation varies according to the seasons of the year.
  • Depending on the geographical location of a place, it may obtain a greater or lesser amount of light energy through the sun’s rays.
  • Artificial light energy depends on other energy sources in order to be used, such as electrical energy.

Examples of light energy

Light energy is present in many of the activities that people carry out on a daily basis, for example, when we turn on the television to watch a particular program, we can do it thanks to the light waves transmitted by the device, which are perceived by the eye and sends us an image. As well as this example there are many others.

  • The light energy generated by light bulbs is the result of the transformation of electrical energy into light energy, which is used to illuminate dark or dimly lit spaces.
  • The energy emitted by the sun is used by plants and transformed into chemical energy to carry out the process of photosynthesis.
  • A burning candle generates lighting through a flame of fire with which a dark space can be illuminated.
  • A light bulb transmits light energy through an electrical energy process, which in turn produces thermal energy by generating heat.
  • Flashlights that use batteries or batteries also transmit light energy through a chemical process that generates electricity and in turn lighting.
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Sources of obtaining light energy

There are different sources of obtaining light energy that can interact with each other to generate light.

The renewable energy sources such as solar, hydraulic, wind, geothermal and biomass energy, are capable of producing light energy as their energy capacities are applied and transformed.

However, the application of these energy sources still have high economic costs, consequently, although they are more used every day, not all people can afford the use of these energy sources.

On the other hand, the non-renewable energy sources that can generate light energy cover the highest percentage of the energy demand of human beings, its application is more economical compared to renewable energy sources.

However, these energy sources are polluting and directly affect the quality of life of all living beings. These energies are obtained from coal, gas, oil and uranium.

See also: solar energy.