This is a basic expertiment to determine the efficency of a small silicon solar cell. This experiment is appropriate for high school or community college level students.
The experiment requires a
small low cost silicon solar cell, a voltmeter, low value resistors
and/or resistance wire, and sunshine.
|This small low cost silicon solar cell is made from broken pieces of larger commercial silicon solar cells.|
|A Ni-Chrome resistance wire stretched along a meter stick is a great low cost way to make a variable resistor. Aligator clips can use for the connections.|
Below you will find links to vendors that will supply solar cells, low value resistors and resistance wire.
Links to Vendors:
The Science e-store: .5V / 1000mA
Edmund Scientifics Silicon Solar Cells: .45V/ 100mA – 1000mA
Arbor Scientific: Silicon Solar Cell .5V / 500mA
The Teachers Source: Silicon Solar Cell .9V / 400mA
http://www.teachersource.com/catalog/index.html (then Search for solar cells)
1 ohm resistors:
0.1 ohm resistors:
Ni-Chrome resistance wire:
18 gauge - 0.088 ohms/cm
21 guage - 0.177 ohms/cm