Photovoltaic Solar Technology: Creating Electricity from Sunlight

Publication Type:
Fact Sheet

Published / Updated:

Photovoltaic (PV) technologies directly convert energy from sunlight into electricity. Sunlight strikes the semiconductor material and releases electrons from their atomic bonds, producing an electric current.

Traditionally, PV cells are made using various forms of silicon, but companies are now manufacturing cells using a wide variety of semiconductor materials, each of which lend themselves to different applications.

Download this fact sheet to learn about the various types of semiconductor materials and their application such as crystalline silicon, thin-film, and multi-junction. Also discussed are the following benefits of using PV panels:

  • PV panels contain no moving parts and generally last twenty years or more
  • PV panels require minimal maintenance
  • PV panels can reduce or eliminate monthly electricity bills
  • PV output peaks mid-day when daily demand is greatest

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