Testing the Efficiency of a Solar Panel

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by Ferret249
Last updated 8 years ago


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Testing the Efficiency of a Solar Panel

HypothisisI expect that when 50% of the solar panel is covered up, it will be running at 50% of its power compared to when taken at the fully exposed value, same goes for every other percent coveredAppuratus-Solar Panel-Resistor-Multimeter-CardborardRiskI have to be careful around the heating element when it is connected as it will get hot and may cause scalds What I MeasuredWhat changed was the amount the solar panel was covered and the ammount of voltage was measured

I used a heating element as a resistor


Science Assignment

Testing the effeciency of an solar panel depending on how much it is covered

The day was very sunny

This is how i covered the panel

This was my setup

1) Gather Required parts2) Clip electrodes onto resistor and multimeter3) Measure the voltage when 0% of the panel is covered4) Move a peice of cardboard across the panel going from 10%,20%,30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90% to 100% covered, measuring the voltage each time5) Record results


How a Solar panel works! I am using a photovoltaics solar panel which means the act of converting solar energy directly into electricity. It does this by using a layer of N-Type silicon and another layer of P-Type silicon , the N-Type Silicon producing a negative charge and the P-Type Silicon poduceing a positive charge when hit by a photon

Biblography•Ecovized:[Name]Kyle Sinclair, [Last updated]1st April 2000, [Web]http://ecovized.com/2011/07/13/what-are-solar-panels/•Howstuff works:[Name]Toothman, Jessika, and Scott Aldous. "How Solar Cells Work" 01 April 2000. [Last updated]01 August 2013. [Web]http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/energy/solar-cell.htm•Solar Power Beginner: [Name] Tyson Champagne[Last updated]2012 [Web] http://www.solarpowerbeginner.com/solar-panel-diagram.html

What Happened

I had some unexpected results. From 0% covered to 50% covered the graph looks fairly consistent but when I cover up 60% of the solar panel i get a major drop in power level from around 2.2 vots to 0.36 volts. Maybe to get a better consistent result i could have used a amperage regulator to get a smooth curve in the results. On the first test I did not have a resistor and I was only measuring potential enery so on the second test I put in a heating element/resistor to give it a load.

Circut Diagram


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