The Photovoltaic Effect as a Function of Irradiance, Temperature and Load
Mentor:Roy McCord, Professor of Physical Sciences, Irvine Valley College
Solar cells (or photovoltaics) produce electrical current as a result of exposure from electromagnetic radiation. In this study, the performance characteristics of solar cells under a wide range of thermal conditions were observed. Performance as a function of temperature, load and irradiance was tested. Temperatures as low as 194.65 degrees Kelvin and as great as 400 degrees Kelvin, and irradiances exceeding four times the solar constant were measured. The results indicate specific optimum performance depends on environmental conditions.