Invisible Solar Cells

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The process of making electricity begins when sunlight travels at the speed of light about 93 million miles from the sun and falls on the solar panel.

The panel is likely located on a sunny roof or perhaps ground-mounted in a yard or nearby field. It’s probably wired together with other solar panels. Multiple panels together are called a solar array.

What is a solar panel exactly? Also called a module, it’s typically a four-cornered, plate-like structure made up of silicon cells, a form of semiconductor.

The cells contain electrons. Certain substances are applied to the cells (such as phosphorus and boron) to create a magnetic field. Some of the cells have a positive charge and some a negative charge.

When the sunlight shines on the cells, it destabilizes the electrons, freeing the negatively-charged electrons to flow to one side of the silicon cell. The movement produces a flow, or current of electricity. Metal conductors on the cell gather the electricity and transfer it to wires.

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