How Solar Cells Are Manufactured
Solar power has been touted among the solutions to the power needs of a hungry world. This introduces the rather fundamental question of how solar panels are in fact manufactured.
The the greater part of solar panels out there nowadays are polysilicon. They are the cells you see in panel systems on homes and portable versions on boats and motorhomes. The panels are essentially a grouping of individual cells. An individual cell will not produce much electricity, but an organization does.
The first rung on the ladder in manufacturing a solar cell is preparation of the silicon. Most cells are manufactured using silicon dioxide. It really is first subjected to severe heat in a furnace, which reduces it to a purity of 99 percent. After that it is subjected to another purification process that results in 99.5 percent purity, the grade had a need to build cells.
Once the silicon is process, the next thing is the crystallization of the silicon. The silicon is melted. Through the melting, a material such as for example boron is added. The precise additive creates the electrical basis of the silicon. In solar panels, that is p-type or positive charged.
At this aspect, the silicon is by means of ingots. They are then cut in very thin wafers using computer guided machinery. The depth of the wafers is normally 200 to 300 microns. The wafers are then cleaned and we proceed to the next phase.
Now it's time to actually build the cells. The cells are immersed in a poor charge chemical in water. An anti-reflective layer is then added. This is exactly what makes solar panels and panels look dark, often blue. Silver or aluminum conductors are then mounted on the cells so electricity could be conducted from the cells.
At this aspect, it really is panel time. The cells are organized in rows on a sheet. They're then connected. A sheet of glass or plastic is positioned over them for protection. The edges are then framed to generate more protection. At this stage, you've got a solar power system and so are all set.
An individual solar cell isn't particularly powerful. It'll produce roughly half of a volt. The thing is efficiency. Polysilicon only converts between 8 and 15 percent of the sunlight hitting it into electricity. As efficiency improves, panels should get smaller and cheaper.