Photovoltaics

Photovoltaics (PV) is the technical term for generating electricity from light and today it is fast becoming an important industrial product. Increasing energy consumption, shrinking resources, and rising energy costs will have significant impact on our s

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Photovoltaics P.K. Shishodia and Gurinder Kaur Ahluwalia

P.K. Shishodia, Ph.D. (*) Department of Physics & Electronics, Zakir Husain Delhi College, University of Delhi, Jawaharlal Nehru Marg, Delhi, 110002, India e-mail: [email protected] G.K. Ahluwalia, Ph.D Materials and Nanotechnology Research Laboratory, Department of Physics College of The North Atlantic, Labrador West Campus, 1600 Nichols Adam Highway, Labrador City, A2V 0B8, NL, Canada e-mail: [email protected] © Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017 G.K. Ahluwalia (ed.), Applications of Chalcogenides: S, Se, and Te, DOI 10.1007/978-3-319-41190-3_10

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10.1

P.K. Shishodia and G.K. Ahluwalia

Introduction

10.1.1 Energy Crisis and Green Energy Solutions for Future With the increasing energy demand, depletion of fossil fuels, climate changes associated with global warming; there is an urgent need for environmentally sustainable energy technologies. Renewable energy technologies, including photovoltaic, solar thermal, wind turbines, hydropower, wave and tidal power, biomassderived liquid fuels and biomass-fired electricity generation supply only 14 % of the energy consumed worldwide. Among all the technologies allowing the production of renewable energy, photovoltaic technology is a promising alternative as a clean energy source. Renewable energy resources such as solar, wind, and hydrothermal energy, by their nature will never be exhausted. Among alternative sources of energy, solar energy is considered as environmentally sustainable and non-polluting source. It is the most readily obtainable source of energy; it is cost-effective and helps in lessening the greenhouse effect. Simply through the photovoltaic cells, solar radiation gets converted into electricity and the power can be used or stored in the backup battery to be used at night. Solar energy has been used in different forms since the ancient times. After a rise in oil prices in 1970s, many countries began to conduct extensive research and development programs to harness solar energy. The price of photovoltaic cells is also going down. As a result, the usage of solar energy has increased. The benefits of using solar power are becoming evident every day. As per the “PV Roadmap Toward 2030 (PV2030)” the target production cost for PV module is expected to be 50 yen/W [1]. It is expected that the PV power generation can supply approximately 50 % of residential electricity consumption (approximately 10 % of total electric consumption) in 2030. But it would be very difficult to reach this goal only by the conventional technologies. One important concept to reduce the solar cell cost and to increase the conversion efficiency is to use nanotechnology, i.e., nanostructured material in solar cell. China, Japan, and USA are expected to be the largest markets, whereas the largest contributors in terms of absolute growth will be China, the USA, and India. Photovoltaic power generation employs solar panels composed of a number of solar cells containing a PV material. Cells requir