What Is Solar Energy? How Solar Power Plant Works

The sun’s energy arrives on earth in the form of electromagnetic waves.Yet we can choose how we harness this power.PV panels are designed to utilise a portion of the visible light spectrum in those EM waves.

Photovoltaic cells are made of special materials called semiconductors such as silicon, which is currently used most commonly. Basically, when light strikes the cell, a certain portion of it is absorbed by the semiconductor material. This means that the energy of the absorbed light is transferred to the semiconductor. The energy knocks electrons loose, allowing them to flow freely.

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PV cells also all have one or more electric field that acts to force electrons freed by light absorption to flow in a certain direction. This flow of electrons is current, and by placing metal contacts on the top and bottom of the PV cell, we can draw that current off for external use, say, to power a calculator.

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This current, together with the cell’s voltage (which is a result of its built-in electric field or fields), defines the power (or wattage) that the solar cell can produce.PV cells also all have one or more electric field that acts to force electrons freed by light absorption to flow in a certain direction.

This flow of electrons is current, and by placing metal contacts on the top and bottom of the PV cell, we can draw that current off for external use, say, to power a calculator. This current, together with the cell’s voltage (which is a result of its built-in electric field or fields), defines the power (or wattage) that the solar cell can produce.

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