Images showing experts at work in the field lend credibility to ‘solutions’ and produce a positive emotional response. Although it may not be clear what is immediately happening here, it is essential that we demonstrate these ‘new stories’ to avoid climate change subject fatigue in our audience, and an interesting image will ensure people want to find out more.
WHAT IT SHOWS: Almeria, Spain. German Aerospace Center's doctoral student Stefan Wilbert works at the meteorological station at Plataforma Solar de Almeria in southern Spain. These Pyranometers (Ufos) measure the amount of sunlight falling on the earth. They also analyse the aerosol content, steam and thin ice clouds in the atmosphere. This data is important for solar power stations, as the solar mirrors can only concentrate direct sunlight and convert it into usable heat. Due to aerosols a small part of the light is scattered and cannot be concentrated by the mirrors. The silver coloured rotating shadow band pyranometers first measure direct sunlight, and when the black shadow band crosses the centre they measure the indirect rays.