How Solar Panel Work

It was the French scientist Edmond Becquerel who discovered in 1839 that there are certain materials that would give off sparks of electricity when hit with sunlight. This property is called photoelectric effect. In 1800s, the first photovoltaic or PV cells were created. In 1950s, researchers came back to the said technology and used silicon; they produced PV cells that convert 4% of sunlight energy into electricity. That was the beginning of the history of solar panels which many enjoy right now. If you’re wondering how solar panels around the world and Utah Solar work, the rest if written below.

Components of PV Cells

The components of PV cells are 2 layers of semiconductor material composed of silicon. When you think of it, silicon is not a good electricity conductor. But if you add impurities, the process is called doping, electric current is created.

The top layer of the PV cell is doped with phosphorus that bonds with silicon to create a negative charge and the bottom layer is doped with boron that bonds with silicon to create positive charge. The surface between the charges is called P-N junction.

Types of Solar Cells

The following are the basic types of solar cells:

  • Single-Crystal Cells

These are made in cylinders and sliced into thin wafers. It can produce the highest-efficiency cells that convert the most sunlight into electricity.

  • Polycrystalline Cells

It is made of molten silicon then sliced into squares. The efficiency is low because its production costs are low too.

Thin Film Cells

It involves depositing or spraying materials onto metal or glass surfaces in thin films. It makes the whole module at one time. The efficiency is lower but the cost is also lower.

How Solar Power is Integrated Into the Electricity Grid

Integrating the solar power into the electricity grid provides many advantages. If you’re powering your home, a building or any utilities, you can choose from the different technologies of solar power it’s either small-scale distributed or large-scale PV systems.

The rooftop solar panels and its electricity supplies on-site needs then the electricity grid supplies the additional electricity if the home or business needs more. The greatest benefit one can get from a rooftop solar is that it produces the electricity when the power is most valuable. For example, most of electricity demand peaks on sunny days where afternoon is hot. The system helps the utilities to meet the peak demand without using the power plants that are polluter and expensive.

The large-scale solar systems on the other hand feed the high-voltage electricity grid directly. It has similarities with power plants. This system operates at highest capacity when the demand is great too. It is also more resilient to extreme weather. The traditional power plants are prone to failures when one of its systems is damaged. The solar system will continue working even if one of its sections is damaged.

If you desire a high level usage of PV, you can but it’s challenging. But technology upgrade is available in the market so increase level of solar penetration is possible.