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Sunday, April 22, 2018

#386 Photovoltaic, photoelectric

Two well established physical effects occuring in solids are photovoltaic and photoelectric effects. As they are quite often confused here is a quick explanation of what is what.

In the case of photovoltaic effect, free charge carriers generated as a result of absorption of energy from sunlight remain within the solid and contribute to the current flowing across it. The most common way to exploit this effect is by constructing semiconductor diodes which are well known as solar cells. In contrast, in the case of the photoelectric effect electrons generated by absorption of light are emitted to the outside of the solid. The prime use of this effect is in the detection of light.



Posted by Jerzy Ruzyllo at 11:23 AM | Semiconductors | Link is the personal blog of Jerzy Ruzyllo. With over 35 years of experience in academic research and teaching in the area of semiconductor engineering (currently holding position of a Distinguished Professor of Electrical Engineering and Professor of Materials Science and Engineering at Penn State University), he has a unique perspective on the developments in this progress driving technical domain and enjoys blogging about it.

With over 2000 terms defined and explained, Semiconductor Glossary is the most complete reference in the field of semiconductors on the market today.

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