Kal-El/Superman has been sent to Earth by his parents to protect him from Krypton's destrucion. On Earth, he develops superpowers and become the Eath's protector. Kryptonians don't have superpowers on her native world (Krypton would be a complete mess otherwise). This is explained by the fact that radiations affect Kryptonians; in particular, our yellow Sun is the source of Superman's powers whereas Krypton's red sun has no effect on Kryptonians.
In the recently leaked pilot of the new TV show Supergirl, Kara Zor-El, Kal-El's cousin, is sent to Earth by her mother with the explicit mission of
protecting her cousin, at that time a baby. She explicitly tells Kara that she will have super-powers on the Earth due to the yellow Sun.
In the comics, do Kryptonians know about the effects that yellow suns have on them? Do they use this information in any way (building an empire of yellow sun powered planets for example)?
Note that, although my question originated from it, I am not interested about answers about Supergirl TV show (I want to see how the show will develop its own storyline), but from comics answers. Informations about Man of Steel and the DC movieverse would be a nice bonus.