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Investigate the effects of two different variables on a solar cell output.
- Essay length: 3764 words
- Submitted: 13/10/2004
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Solar Cell Investigation
To investigate the effects of two different variables on a solar cell output.
Solar cell information:
The solar cells that are on calculators and satellites are photovoltaic (PV) cells or modules, which are basically a group of cells, which are electrically connected and packaged in one frame. Photovoltaics, are made up of two words: photo = light, voltaic = electricity, and therefore you can deduce that they convert light into electricity.
These PV cells are made of special materials called semiconductors such as silicon. When the light strikes the cell, a certain amount of it is absorbed within 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 and therefore producing a current. PV cells also all have one or more electric fields that act to force electrons freed by light absorption, to flow in a certain direction. By placing metal contacts on the top and bottom of the PV cell, you can draw that current off to use externally. E.g. the current can power a calculator. This current,
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