The solar cells that you see on calculators and satellites are also called photovoltaic pv cells which as the name implies photo meaning light and voltaic meaning electricity convert sunlight directly into electricity a module is a group of cells connected electrically and packaged . Solar cell performance and efficiency the efficiency of a cell is simply the amount of electrical power coming out of a cell divided by the energy from sunlight coming in the amount of electricity produced from pv cells depends on the quality intensity and wavelengths of the light available and multiple performance characteristics of the cell. The solar photovoltaic cells in your solar panels are the mechanisms which convert sunlight into energy when you install solar panels on your house the pv cells convert sunlight into direct current dc and an inverter connected to the system is what converts direct current into alternating current ac which is the type of current needed . Photons carry solar energy sunlight is composed of photons or particles of solar energy these photons contain varying amounts of energy that correspond to the different wavelengths of the solar spectrum a pv cell is made of semiconductor material when photons strike a pv cell they may reflect off the cell pass through the cell or be absorbed by the semiconductor material
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