Solar Energy Cell through time

Companies and different industries continue to develop solar energy cell. It is sometimes referred to as the heart of the process, even the key to the process or a device used to specifically capture energy from the sun. But what ever you want to call it, it is undeniable that it does play a significant role. Solar energy cells are devices that help in the process of converting the energy of sunlight into electricity.

Solar cells are electrically connected together as module. They usually have a cover like glass in front side so that the light from the sun can pass through. This cover helps in keeping the semiconductor safe from dirt and bad weather. To be able to fully utilize the energy from the sun, the electricity is most often fed into a grid using inverters, stand alone systems, and batteries that store energy.

A brief history

An assembly of cells makes up solar panels. The first solar cell was built by Charles Fritts in 1883. The first cell was coated by a thin layer of gold. But it was only 1% efficient. Other versions followed soon after that. Like Aleksandr Stoletov, a Russian physicist, Russell Ohl patented the modern junction semiconductor solar cell in 1946. Even Albert Einstein received a Nobel Prize in 1921 for his explanation of the photoelectric effect in 1905.

But it wasn’t until 1954, that Chapin, Fuller and Pearson developed the first highly-efficient solar cell and it has evolved since then.

Kinds of solar cells

Photovoltaics (PV) are arrays of solar energy cells containing material that converts solar radiation into direct current electricity.

Traditional solar cells are bulky and rigid. Some manufacturers developed lightweight, flexible solar cell. They are cheaper to make and develop as compared to traditional versions because they use less silicon. This is a more conventional way to go as far as the solar market is concerned.

There are different models and designs to choose from. It all depends in identifying what you want so you can easily get the best model or brand that will suit your needs.

Amorphous silicon solar cells can be placed in thin films at low temperatures, which can benefit different electronics because of its unique capabilities. You would typically see them on solar powered calculators. There are actually two kinds of amorphous silicon. These are the following:

Microcrystalline silicon which is also known as nanocrystalline silicon. It contains small crystals, absorbs a broader spectrum of light and is considered very flexible.

Micromorphous silicon module is made up of amorphous and microcrystalline silicon solar cells. Sharp is known to use this in capturing blue light to help increase efficiency of the cells when there is no direct sunlight.

There are other products used to charge solar radios, solar backpacks, solar toys and many more that use polycrystalline silicon solar cells and monocrystalline silicon solar cells instead of amorphous solar cell or ribbon cell. You can find more information about these products online.