What is Inside a Solar Panel?

Wayne National Forest Solar Panel Construction
Wayne National Forest Solar Panel Construction | Image by Flickr

The sun is an efficient and free source of energy that can be used in many different ways. A good way of the sun can be used in an inventive way to convert sunlight into electricity. This is done by using what is called a solar panel. It seems hard to imagine that the sun can give us electricity, but it’s really not that crazy of a concept. After all, the sun is what keeps our planet life, helping trees, plants and flowers to flourish. Everyone has seen a solar panel at some point in their lives. They are office buildings, highway signs, and even homes. Once you understand how solar energy works, it will make crazy looking roofs lot more sense.

The suns energy is used with solar panels with photovoltaic cells that convert sunlight into electricity. These cells have a few different components. There are two layers of silicon, which is the major part of the cell make-up, and the place where they meet is where the bulk of the activity. The PV cell also has metal strips which are used to direct the flow of electrons, the cell produces electricity. These electrons also flow back and return by means of metal support to a circle. Finally, the PV cell has a “reflective” coating ensure that the photons, the particles of sunlight necessary for solar energy too late to be absorbed by the silicon layers. Pretty cool, right?

PV cells need a strong and stable building material, which is where the silicon. It does not work so well on its own, thus phosphorus and boron are generally added to the silicon to make a better conductor. The upper silicon layer has added phosphorus, and therefore contains more electrons. The lower silicon layer has added boron, with fewer electrons. An electric field is created when the two layers are brought together. The extra electrons move naturally in the top layer to the bottom layer. As soon as the lower layer receives these extra electrons, it is negatively charged, when the two silicon layers meet. At the same time, the top layer is negatively charged.

When the sun hits the PV cell, photons from sunlight to extract electrons in two layers of silicon. The electric field pushes the electrons traveling to the place where the two layers of silicon to meet the top layer. This forces the electrons from the metal conductor strips cell generates electricity! Now that you know what goes into a solar panel, I’m sure it makes much more sense how the energy of the sun can be converted into electricity.

Source: http://ezinearticles.com/?What-is-Inside-a-Solar-Panel?&id=3620157 by Paul A Buchanan


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