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Solar panels can learn from plants.

Plants are smart, they’ve figured out the power of the sun long before humans. Plants are self-sustaining because they understand a process called photosynthesis. The process in which a plant converts sunlight into glucose (energy) for the plant to grow and even produce fruits and vegetables. Remember this stuff in grade school science class?

Photovoltaics is the process in which a solar cell turns sunlight into electricity. Solar Panels are made up of a bunch of solar cells which make up a panel. When sunlight hits the panel it goes through a process similar to photosynthesis to covert sunlight into an electrical load. Leaves on a plant are designed flat with surface area to capture sunlight similar to an array of solar panels which makes up a solar electric system.

Solar panels have a lot to learn from plants even though there are some similarities, solar panels are typically 20% efficient while plants covert 95% of sunlight into energy. Imagine if solar panels were able to covert 95% of sunlight into electricity, all the cost concerns at that point would go out the window. This comparison highlights we have a lot to learn from nature’s most basic life forms…

Author: Deep Patel

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