You probably have heard the term solar cell many times. For decades, people have found many ways on how to use it. It is a part of small gadgets like calculators, watches, toys and other things that has minute mechanisms. When put together, it can also be used for powering remote cellular sites and telecommunication spots. What exactly is a solar cell? Can it really be used efficiently as source of alternative thermal energy for the home?
A solar cell is also referred to as photovoltaic cell or photoelectric cell. It is a type of electric device which works by converting light into usable electricity. It is also dependent on the photovoltaic effect wherein the voltage it produces creates electric energy that can be directly utilized.
A solar cell is made from a monocrystalline silicon wafer. Once it is assembled together, it then forms a solar module. It is used in creating solar panels that gathers energy from the sun which is used as electricity.
In places where there are no commercial power lines yet, the combination of multiple photo-voltaic rays can produce electricity that powers up small appliances like radios. It works perfectly for other appliances too as a support for batteries. When the electrical energy from batteries is all used up, the solar energy can make up for the energy demand.
Smaller solar panels have long been used as source of alternative energy for smaller devices like calculator and watches. Today, with the improving technology that we have, more and more ways of using the sun as a source of energy are being developed. The system keeps on improving. That is why homes and industries can now depend on it.
On a bigger scale, the solar cells which make up solar panels bring sufficient energy to homes. All it takes is a matter of putting up an effective solar panel system. The most common way of using these panels is to provide sufficient thermal energy for the water heating system. Instead of using the electricity from utility companies, the solar panels can cover for 50% to 80% of electricity demand in every household.
Countries like the United States, Taiwan, Japan, China and Germany specialize in the production of solar cell. These countries are the leading manufacturers in the market but the solar panel manufacturers in China are the leaders when it comes to pricing. If you have built your solar panels using top of the line solar cells, it can last for as long as 15 to 30 years. Your initial investment will be returned to you in multiple folds.
If you are considering having solar panels installed in your home, there are two options that you could either opt for the available do it yourself kits or have a professional company install it for you. Just consider what how you intend to utilize it and what works best for your location.
The solar cell may be a very small thing but when put together, it can produce impressive amount of alternative energy. With various systems now which utilize solar energy, there are more ways on how to save money and natural resources.