Photovoltaic

Photovoltaics (PV) is the name of a method of converting solar energy into direct current electricity using semiconducting materials that exhibit the photovoltaic effect, a phenomenon commonly studied in physics, photochemistry and electrochemistry. A photovoltaic system employs solar panels composed of a number of solar cells to supply usable solar power. The process is both physical and chemical in nature, as the first step involves the photoelectric effect from which a second electrochemical process takes place involving crystallized atoms being ionized in a series, generating an electric current. Power generation from solar PV has long been seen as a clean sustainable energy technology which draws upon the planet’s most plentiful and widely distributed renewable energy source – the sun. The direct conversion of sunlight to electricity occurs without any moving parts or environmental emissions during operation. It is well proven, as photovoltaic systems have now been used for fifty years in specialized applications, and grid-connected PV systems have been in use for over twenty years.