Read under this category about the advancements in the field of photovoltaic (solar) panels which are
Sun is the precursor to all life on the planet Earth. All types of energy can ultimately be sourced to the Sun. Wind moves because of the thermal energy traceable to the Sun and so does the geothermal energy and the hydrothermal energy or even the marine thermal energy.
The heat from sun is used in the solar cookers that are used by Indian housewives since the 1990’s. The solar cookers already use the glass/sheet metal reflector to compound the heating effect of the warm sunlight.
Solar energy is harvested by plants into creating food for other life forms and then a lot of biological functions. The E = hν equation governs the energy contained in any form of light by the virtue of the spin in the photons constituting the light. Here, while ‘h’ is the Plank’s constant, the Greek alphabet, ‘ν’ (pronounced ‘nu’), is the frequency of the incident photon by the virtue of the vibrations of the three constituting quarks and gluons.
When sunlight is incident on the plant leaves on the land or the green-blue algae in the sea, the solar energy is fixed and stored in form of ATP after an electron chain is followed as a part of photosynthesis.
Biologists have long known about this feature of plant kingdom and their findings have inspired the engineers in the foray of electrical and semiconductor appliances to build photovoltaic panels.
These days, modern photovoltaic cells rely on the photovoltaic and photoelectric effects exhibited by semi-conductors.
The property of photovoltaic effect is exhibited by Silicon duped with other elements such as Selenium and Germanium which are all semi-conducting materials that are capable of converting the energy (E = hν) of the photons into electricity.
While the photovoltaic effect was first observed and mentioned by Alexandre Edmond Becquerel in 1839 while studying the effects of light on electrolytic cells.
In 1873, Willoughby Smith discovered photoconductivity in Selenium while subjecting the metal under various tests and, during the course of time, Silicon was found to be more apt for the purpose.