working of solar cell

Solar cells can be arranged into large groupings called arrays. Examples of semiconductor materials employed in solar cells include silicon, gallium arsenide, indium phosphide, and copper indium selenide. Each panel in the solar panel includes semiconductor material to combine the properties of insulators and metals. A voltage is set up which is known as photo voltage. They convert sunlight into direct current (DC) electricity. 1. We also provide a current collecting electrode at the bottom of the n-type layer. Light enters the device through an optical coating, or antireflection layer, that minimizes the loss of light by reflection; it effectively traps the light falling on the solar cell by promoting its transmission to the energy-conversion layers below. The light energy, in the form of photons, supplies sufficient energy to the junction to create a number of electron-hole pairs. Solar PV cells are grouped into modules, and modules usually grouped into solar arrays – modules and arrays come in a variety of shapes and sizes. When the cell is connected to a load, as shown, the electrons will diffuse from n top. A solar cell works in three steps: Photons in the sunlight hit the solar cell and are absorbed by the semiconductor material. In solar cells, the amount of electrical energy gene… The materials used to construct the various layers of solar cells are essentially the same as those used to produce the diodes and transistors of solid-state electronics and microelectronics (see also electronics: Optoelectronics). We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. But, a single photovoltaic cell does not produce enough amount of electricity. Solar Panels are becoming more and more popular with every passing day and the main component of these solar panels is the electronic systems called Photovoltaic Cells. When these photons collide with valence electrons’. In order to combine the advantages of amorphous and crystalline silicon, hybrid silicon solar cells have been developed. Similarly, the newly created holes once come to the p-type side cannot further cross the junction became of same barrier potential of the junction. Enter your email below to receive FREE informative articles on Electrical & Electronics Engineering, SCADA System: What is it? A typical silicon solar cell can produce up to 0.5 V and current up to 6 A. Twitter. Individual solar cells are sorted by power. As the concentration of electrons becomes higher in one side, i.e. In microelectronics the goal is, of course, to construct electronic components of ever smaller dimensions in order to increase their density and operating speed within semiconductor chips, or integrated circuits. The ideal power of the cell is Vo.Isc. Negatively-charged electrons are knocked off from their atoms and start flowing in the same direction to produce electric current. The photovoltaic process bears certain similarities to photosynthesis, the process by which the energy in light is converted into chemical energy in plants. One common means of storing this electrical energy is by charging electrochemical storage batteries. Since most of the energy in sunlight and artificial light is in the visible range of electromagnetic radiation, a solar cell absorber should be efficient in absorbing radiation at those wavelengths. The common single junction silicon solar cell can produce a maximum open-circuit voltage of approximately 0.5 to 0.6 volts. Solar cells, whether used in a central power station, a satellite, or a calculator, have the same basic structure. Silicon is the most widely used semiconductor material for constructing the photovoltaic cell. The overwhelming majority of solar cells are fabricated from silicon—with increasing efficiency and lowering cost as the materials range from amorphous (noncrystalline) to polycrystalline to crystalline (single crystal) silicon forms. Since solar cells obviously cannot produce electric power in the dark, part of the energy they develop under light is stored, in many applications, for use when light is not available. The basic component of a solar cell is pure silicon, which has been used as an electrical component for decades. They’re checked for tiny cracks or other defects using electroluminescent testing. Energy from the sun is the most abundant, and absolutely freely available energy on planet earth. Based on the principle of photovoltaic effect, solar cells or photovoltaic cells are made. The maximum usef… Once, the newly created free electrons come to the n-type side, cannot further cross the junction because of barrier potential of the junction. For solar cells, a thin semiconductor wafer is specially treated to form an electric field, positive on one side and negative on the other. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Individual solar cells can be combined to form modules commonly known as solar panels. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition), Programmable Logic Controllers (PLCs): Basics, Types & Applications, Diode: Definition, Symbol, and Types of Diodes, Thermistor: Definition, Uses & How They Work, Half Wave Rectifier Circuit Diagram & Working Principle, Lenz’s Law of Electromagnetic Induction: Definition & Formula. The material requirements would be enormous but feasible, as silicon is the second most abundant element in Earth’s crust. Because they have no moving parts that could need maintenance or fuels that would require replenishment, solar cells provide power for most space installations, from communications and weather satellites to space stations. Solar panels are made out of photovoltaic cells (which is why generating electricity with solar panels is also called solar PV) that convert the sun’s energy into electricity. Since metal blocks light, the grid lines are as thin and widely spaced as is possible without impairing collection of the current produced by the cell. In the last two decades the contribution of solar energy to the world’s total energy supply has grown significantly. Solar Cells Working Principle 3D Animation. Electrical4U is dedicated to the teaching and sharing of all things related to electrical and electronics engineering. Facebook. Lamination PelesTears October 29, 2010 @ Cougars- The silicon based solar cells that are so common today have only been around since the early fifties. This sequence of converting the energy in light into the energy of excited electrons and then into stored chemical energy is strikingly similar to the process of photosynthesis. Learn about efforts to increase the efficiency of solar cells. In many such cells, the absorber layer and the back junction layer are both made of the same material. In solar cell fabrication, however, one seeks to construct a large-area device because the power produced is proportional to the illuminated area. They’re soldered together into strings to form a solar panel (or module). Solar cells and microelectronic devices share the same basic technology. A standard solar panel (also known as a solar module) consists of a layer of silicon cells, a metal frame, a glass casing and various wiring to allow current to flow from the silicon cells. Silicon (atomic #14 on the periodic table) is a nonmetal with conductive properties that allow it to absorb and convert sunlight into electricity. The back electrical contact layer has no such diametrically opposed restrictions. ­Photovoltaic cells are made of special materials called semiconductors such as silicon, which is currently used most commonly. In the course of this article, we will be making reference to sunlight as electromagnetic radiation (EM-radiation). The antireflection layer is typically an oxide of silicon, tantalum, or titanium that is formed on the cell surface by spin-coating or a vacuum deposition technique. 2. Related Article: Best LED Headlights. The light energy, in the form of photons, supplies sufficient energy to the junction to create a number of electron-hole pairs. Furthermore, the government is laying much emphasis on the solar energy so after some years we may expect that every household and also every electrical system is powered by solar or the renewable energy source. Silicon solar panels are often referred to as '1 st generation' panels, as the silicon solar cell technology gained ground already in the 1950s. The silicon atom has four valence electrons. The materials which are used for this purpose must have band gap close to 1.5ev. Solar cell, also called photovoltaic cell, any device that directly converts the energy of light into electrical energy through the photovoltaic effect. By. So let’s start with some basics. Photovoltaic cells, photons and electrons may sound complicated, but soon you’ll be a solar expert. In the Mojave Desert, Kramer Junction, a solar power facility, also creates an impressive amount of power. The raw material must be available in abundance and the cost of the material must be low. In the absence of the junction-forming layers, these “free” electrons are in random motion, and so there can be no oriented direct current. The incident light breaks the thermal equilibrium condition of the junction. A solar energy plant produces megawatts of electricity. The International Space Station (ISS) was built in sections beginning in 1998. A commonly used solar cell structure. We then apply a few finer electrodes on the top of the p-type semiconductor layer. These electrodes do not obstruct light to reach the thin p-type layer. WhatsApp. Once the energy from the sun falls on the panel then a semiconductor absorbs, the energy of photons transfers to electrons and allows the flow of electrons through the material like an electrical current. Let us understand solar cell working principle. Full disclaimer here. When light falls on a solar cell, electrons in the absorber layer are excited from a lower-energy “ground state,” in which they are bound to specific atoms in the solid, to a higher “excited state,” in which they can move through the solid. That's a basic introduction to solar cells—and if that's all you wanted, you can stop here.The rest of this article goes into more detail about different types of solar cells, howpeople are putting solar power to practical use, and why solar energy is taking such a long time tocatch on. A very thin layer of p-type semiconductor is grown on a relatively thicker n-type semiconductor. Pinterest. 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