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Solar panel

Photovoltaic solar panels absorb sunlight as energy to produce direct current. Photovoltaic (PV) module is the package of photovoltaic solar cell, which can provide different voltage and wattage. Photovoltaic modules constitute photovoltaic arrays of photovoltaic systems that generate and provide solar energy for commercial and residential applications.

The most common application of solar energy collection outside agriculture is solar water heating system.

Photovoltaic modules use light energy (photons) from the sun to generate electricity through photovoltaic effect. Most modules use wafer based crystalline silicon cells or thin-film cells. The structural (bearing) components of the module can be top or bottom. The battery must also be protected from mechanical damage and moisture. Most modules are rigid, but semi flexible modules based on thin film batteries can also be used. The batteries must be electrically connected in series with each other.

The PV junction box is connected to the back of the solar panel, which is its output interface. On the outside, most PV modules use the MC4 connector type to facilitate a weatherproof connection to the entire system. In addition, USB power interface can be used.

The modules can be connected in series to achieve the required output voltage or in parallel to provide the required current capacity (Amperes). The wires that allow the current to leave the module may contain silver, copper, or other non-magnetic conductive transition metals. In the case of partial module obscuration, bypass diodes can be incorporated or used externally to maximize the output of the still illuminated part of the module.

Some special solar photovoltaic modules include concentrators, in which light is focused on smaller cells by lenses or mirrors. This makes it possible to use cells (e.g. gallium arsenide) with higher cost per unit area in a cost-effective manner.

The solar panel also uses a metal frame composed of frame components, brackets, reflector shapes and slots to better support the panel structure.

In 1839, Alexandre Edmond Becquerel observed for the first time the ability of some materials to generate electric charge through exposure. Although the leading solar panels are inefficient even for simple electronic devices, they are used as instruments to measure light. It wasn't until 1873, when Willoughby Smith discovered that the charge might have been caused by tapping selenium, that Becquerel's observations were reproduced. After the discovery, William Grylls Adams and Richard Evans day published the effect of light on selenium in 1876, describing the experiments they used to replicate Smith's results. In 1881, Charles Fritts created the first commercial solar panel. According to Fritts, it "has a continuous, constant and considerable force not only through exposure to the sun, but also in the dark, diffuse sunlight". However, these solar panels are inefficient, especially compared to coal-fired power plants. In 1939, Russell OHL created solar cell designs for many modern solar panels. He patented his design in 1941. In 1954, Bell Labs first used the design to make the first commercially viable silicon solar cell.

At present, most solar modules are produced by crystalline silicon (c-Si) solar cells made of polycrystalline silicon and monocrystalline silicon. In 2013, crystalline silicon accounted for more than 90% of global photovoltaic production, while the rest of the market consisted of thin film technologies using cadmium telluride, CIGS and amorphous silicon

The emerging third generation solar technology uses advanced membrane cells. Compared with other solar technologies, they produce relatively high conversion efficiency at a lower cost. In addition, high cost, high efficiency and close packed rectangular multi junction (MJ) batteries are best used for spacecraft solar panels because they provide the highest power generation ratio per kilogram lifted into space. MJ batteries are compound semiconductors made of gallium arsenide (GaAs) and other semiconductor materials. Another emerging photovoltaic technology using MJ cells is focused photovoltaic (CPV).