It is a form of photoelectric cell, defined as a device whose electrical characteristics, such as current, voltage, or resistance, vary when exposed to light. Solar cells are the building blocks of photovoltaic modules, otherwise solar energy problems and solutions pdf as solar panels. Solar cells are described as being photovoltaic, irrespective of whether the source is sunlight or an artificial light.
The absorption of light, generating either electron-hole pairs or excitons. The separation of charge carriers of opposite types. The separate extraction of those carriers to an external circuit.
In contrast, a solar thermal collector supplies heat by absorbing sunlight, for the purpose of either direct heating or indirect electrical power generation from heat. From a solar cell to a PV system. Assemblies of solar cells are used to make solar modules that generate electrical power from sunlight, as distinguished from a “solar thermal module” or “solar hot water panel”. A solar array generates solar power using solar energy.
Multiple solar cells in an integrated group, all oriented in one plane, constitute a solar photovoltaic panel or solar photovoltaic module. Photovoltaic modules often have a sheet of glass on the sun-facing side, allowing light to pass while protecting the semiconductor wafers.
Solar cells are usually connected in series and parallel circuits or series in modules, creating an additive voltage. Strings of series cells are usually handled independently and not connected in parallel, though as of 2014, individual power boxes are often supplied for each module, and are connected in parallel. Photovoltaic System Pricing Trends reports lower prices for the U.
The photovoltaic effect was experimentally demonstrated first by French physicist Edmond Becquerel. In 1839, at age 19, he built the world’s first photovoltaic cell in his father’s laboratory. Willoughby Smith first described the “Effect of Light on Selenium during the passage of an Electric Current” in a 20 February 1873 issue of Nature.