Photovoltaic Energy And Solar Energy Essay example

1811 Words Apr 3rd, 2016 8 Pages
Why photovoltaic (PV) energy you may ask? Well let me tell you about photovoltaic energy first. The photovoltaic (PV) effect is the process of converting light into electricity. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), “the PV effect was observed as early as 1839 by Alexandre Edmund Becquerel, and was the subject of scientific inquiry through the early twentieth century. In 1954, Bell Labs in the U.S. introduced the first solar PV device that produced a useable amount of electricity, and by 1958, solar cells were being used in a variety of small-scale scientific and commercial applications. The energy crisis of the 1970s saw the beginning of major interest in using solar cells to produce electricity in homes and businesses.”
Photovoltaic devices, also known as solar cells, generate electricity directly from sunlight through an electronic process that occurs naturally in certain types of material, known as semiconductors. On the semiconductors, photons strike and ionize the semiconductor material on the solar panel, which causes electrons to break free from their atoms. Due to the semiconductor structure, the electrons are forced in one direction through an electric circuit, creating a flow of electrical current. This powers electrical devices or sends electricity to the grid.
Traditional solar cells are made from silicon and usually flat-plate. According to Renewable Energy, “Solar cells are typically combined into modules that hold about 40…

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