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BTEC HNCD Engineering - Professional Engineering Management - Pearson Qualifications

2499 Downloads I Published: 25 Jan ,2020

Introduction

Overview of the research

Photovoltaic are one of the most effective means of creating the electronic energy. It does the usage of cells which are made of solar through which the sunlight is converted into flow of electrons and hence creates the photovoltaic effect. This is very useful form of energy as it stores the power which can be further use to recharge the other electronic equipment’s. It is very useful in those areas where the supply of energy is not continuous and need to be created and stored so that it can be used further (Fonash, 2012). Although the total cost of its implementation is high and needs much investments at the initial stages but once the installation is done it gives long term benefits to the user. The major disadvantage of this process is that it is highly depended on the weather and cannot be used in case if there is an absence of sunlight. It is now widely used in the rural areas where there was no supply of electricity before. Huge plants of Photovoltaic cell are installed which has assisted in generating electric power by using solar cells. As the energy derived through this process is pure and free from any kind of impurities it is good for health also and hence the use of same should be maximised in the society.

Aim: Main aim of this project is “To investigate the use of Photovoltaic cell in generating electric power”.

Objectives:

  • To develop understanding about the Photovoltaic cell.
  • To identify the use of Photovoltaic cell in generation of electric power.
  • To analyse benefits or advantages of solar energy.

Questions

  • What is Photovoltaic cell?
  • What are the uses of Photovoltaic cell in generation of electric power?
  • What are the advantages of solar energy?

 

Rationale of the study -

The reason behind carrying out this research is that there are mixed opinion about the usage of Photovoltaic cells for creating the power. It is important to understand the topic in detail so that it can be understood that this innovation is beneficial for the society and by replacing it with the traditional system overall resources of the environment can be saved (Li Zhu and Yang, 2012). The topic would be critically discussing which will help in enhancing the knowledge and therefore will create awareness among all.

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Literature Review

This is an important section of the research report through which a detail understanding of the topic can be gained. Here the concern issue is analysed from the perspective of different authors which assist in raising the knowledge. Also, as here the critical study is done the positive and negative both the aspects are highlighted which further creates better understanding.

Theme1: Concept of Photovoltaic cells

The photovoltaic cells are great innovations in the technology as with the help of same much increase in the overall availability of the power is made into distinct areas where earlier there was no supply of power. These cells have the capacity of converting the natural light into power which can be further utilised to recharge and hence this way the renewable energy is created which is of great importance in the today era where there is limited availability of resources. Not just the solar energy there are few other photovoltaic cells too which are capable of translating the ultra violet rays to direct current. Sukhatme and Nayak, (2017)on contrary talked about the disadvantages which are associated with this concept. The PV cells are not completely friendly with the environment. There is presence of toxic chemicals as is widely used during the production process of same. Although the impact of such substances can be controlled but again it demands much of energy. Apart from this the total cost of installation is very high and cannot be afforded by people in general. It is also said that the overall power of the solar cells is low in comparison to other sources which also creates the renewable energy. It has high dependency on the availability of sunlight and in absence of same it is of no use. Therefore, the different authors have distinct view points on the concern topic.

Theme 2: The use of Photovoltaic cell in generation of electric power

Lewis (2016) says that the conversion of sunlight to energy is a simple process. It is done through the solar cells by exciting electrons in silicon cells using the photons of sunlight from the sun. a solar panel is kept where the electrons from the sun hit with it and creates power. A complete field is created in which electrons flow generate electricity.

Theme 3: Advantages of solar energy

Camacho and Berenguel (2012)emphasis on the positive impacts and usage of the solar energies. The panel of these energises do not contain any sort of pollutants and hence are comparatively better for the environment. The most important benefit of this process is that it is able to produce very clean and pure energy which is of good quality and hence is fine for usage. Author further adds that today as pollution has become the major concern it is important that such resources are used which do not harm the surroundings. As sun is a natural resource and energy from same is available in abundance. With the help of solar energy concept vital use of this resource is made which was earlier getting wasted. Kannan and Vakeesan (2016) added the other major benefit of this concept which was total increase in the time duration for which the energy is made available. Solar energy facilitated the user with the abundance availability of resources. Which reduced the pressure from the other sources of electricity and hence less harm to the resources is done therefore. Palit (2013) focussed on other advantages which are associated with this concept of solar energy. As it is beneficial for the society and supports the optimum utilisation of resources it is encouraged by government too. There are less taxes imposition on its use and subsidies are provided for those who promote the use of same which further shows how it is good for society in overall. This way the dependency on the sources from foreign like the fossil fuels and oil has also diminished which has a direct impact on the economy of the country. Denholm and Mehos (2014) added another favourable point to this issue and said that investment made on this process gives returns instead of getting bills for the user. It shows that how by one time sharing in the installation of solar plants can benefit the user. Apart from this the author also laid emphasis on the easy installation process of this concept. It can be placed anywhere in the bare land or an open area at the terrace. It is safe to use as unlike the traditional energy it does not give currents. This way it is friendly for children also and can be widely used. It stores the energies which are produced during the day time to be used during nights and hence solve the issues specially of rural areas.

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Research Methodology

Research methodology refers as a systematic process which is opt by investigator to gather data from different sources. In this part, different techniques and methods related to the topic will be include which is used by researcher. As these methods helps in gathering of proper information regarding the use of Photovoltaic cell in generating electric power by using solar cells (Powell and Edgar, 2012). There are some methods which are useful according to this research are explained as below:

Types of investigation: This part of research methodology is divided into two separate section which are qualitative and quantitative. Among these investigation, quantitative method of study will be applied because it assists in gathering of information from questionnaire. However, quantitative method of study is not useful according to this investigation as it requires maximum resources of investigator.

Research approach:For gathering information regarding the selected topic, quantitative and quantitative are consider two approach of research. Among them, quantitative approach will be applied as it supports in collecting of data from questionnaire which is easier as compare to other method. On the other hand, for analysing information, inductive and deductive are two approaches of research. Among these approaches, deductive approach of research will be opting as it assists researcher by providing quantitative information about the use of photovoltaic cell in generating electric power (Bollinger and Gillingham, 2012).

Research Philosophy: This section of research methodology is classified into two essential parts which are interpretivisim and positivism. Among these philosophies of research, positivism research philosophy will be used. Main reason of applying positivism philosophy as it supports in identification of research impact and also assist them in driving of valid conclusions. Interpretivisim philosophy is not applied for this study because it not helps in driving of valid outcomes.

Data collection: For collecting primary and secondary data about the use of Photovoltaic cell in generating electric power by using solar cells different sources will be used by researcher (Mishra and Bäuerle, 2012). Questionnaire is used for collecting primary data whereas for gathering secondary information books, journals, articles and many other publication research relevant to the topic will be applied. As both primary and secondary source of data collection are useful for collecting information regarding the photovoltaic cell in generating electric power.

Sampling: Probability and non-probability are sampling techniques for selection of sample size. Among these techniques, probability sampling is used as it saves time and cost of investigator and also help them in selection of sample size on random basis. 30 respondents will be selected for using probability sampling. Non-probability is another technique of sampling which is not used for selecting sample size for this research because it is time consuming method.

Research instruments:There are various instruments of research such as interview, market survey, observation, case study, focus group, questionnaire etc. These are effective instruments of data collection but according to this study, questionnaire will be followed. Main reason behind selecting questionnaire as a primary data collection as it supports investigator by giving reliable and valid information which is mainly associated with the use of Photovoltaic cell in generating electric power by using solar cells (Lewis, 2016). Some important and useful questions will be prepared which are:

Q1. Do you think that Solar energy has capacity to resolve the issue of shortage of energy?

A) Yes

B) No

C) Up to an extent

Q2. In your opinion, what can be used from the following for converting energy of light into electricity.

A) Photovoltaic cell

B) Water

C) Wind

D) Coal

Q3. Do you have any idea about function of photovoltaic cell?

A) Yes

B) No

C) Only basics

Q4. What is the most important benefit of solar energy in upcoming time?

A) Reduce pollution

B) Its renewable energy

C) Low maintenance cost

D) Diverse application

Q5 Do you think that Solar energy is cost efficient?

A) Yes

B) No

C) Do not know

Q6 ''The technology of storing solar energy can have considered as major breakthrough in energy industry''. Do you agree with this statement?

A) Agree

B) Disagree

C) Partially agree

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Data Analysis

In this section the data which is collected through the questionnaire is further processed and presented in the form of graphs and thereafter interpretation of same is done which helps in understanding the topic in more detail.

Q1. Do you think that Solar energy has capacity to resolve the issue of shortage of energy.

Frequency

A) Yes

22

B) No

3

C) Up to an extent

5

Q2. In your opinion, what can be used from the following for converting energy of light into electricity.

Frequency

A) Photovoltaic cell

20

B) Water

5

C) Wind

3

D) Coal

2

Q3. Do you have any idea about function of photovoltaic cell?

Frequency

A) Yes

25

B) No

3

C) Only basics

2

Q4. What is the most important benefit of solar energy in upcoming time?

Frequency

A) Reduce pollution

10

B) Its renewable energy

10

C) Low maintenance cost

5

D) Diverse application

5

Q5 Do you think that Solar energy is cost efficient?

Frequency

A) Yes

25

B) No

3

C) Do not know

2

Q6 ''The technology of storing solar energy can have considered as major breakthrough in energy industry''. Do you agree with this statement?

Frequency

A) Agree

22

B) Disagree

3

C) Partially agree

5

Theme 1: Solar energy has capacity to resolve the issue of shortage of energy.

Q1. Do you think that Solar energy has capacity to resolve the issue of shortage of energy.

Frequency

A) Yes

22

B) No

3

C) Up to an extent

4

Interpretation: The above graphs shows clearly that solar energy is capable of resolving the problems that are associated with the energy. According to more than 50% of total respondents it helps in better energy reserves and hence use of same should be maximised. Only three people do not agree with the same statement and remaining 4 believes that it is although mitigating the issues but only to an extent and not doing it completely.

Theme 2: Idea about function of photovoltaic cell

Q3. Do you have any idea about function of photovoltaic cell?

Frequency

A) Yes

25

B) No

3

C) Only basics

2

Interpretation: The graph shows that maximum people are aware about the concept of PV cells as 25 people know what is it. Remaining two people had little idea about this variety of cells and 3 had no clue what the photovoltaic cell are.

Theme 3: Converting energy of light into electricity.

Q2. In your opinion, what can be used from the following for converting energy of light into electricity.

Frequency

A) Photovoltaic cell

20

B) Water

5

C) Wind

3

D) Coal

2

Interpretation: In order to know what resources are of maximum use for converting light into energy the photovoltaic cells are found to be most effective as it supported by 2. Respondents which is good majority. Rest 5 favours water for the energy creation and 3 for wind and only 2 supported coal for this process which is a very less number.

Theme 4: Important benefit of solar energy in upcoming time

Q4. What is the most important benefit of solar energy in upcoming time?

Frequency

A) Reduce pollution

10

B) Its renewable energy

10

C) Low maintenance cost

5

D) Diverse application

5

Interpretation: It is important to know the different benefits which are associated with this concept and to know them it was asked from people that how this source of energy is benefiting them. It was found that there are distinct benefits of same. Most importantly it is contributing in reducing the pollution and is good to use as this is a renewable energy. These advantages are supported by 10 respondents each. Thereafter says that it is beneficial because the maintenance cost of solar energy is less and can be can used again and again. Lastly, the remaining 5 respondents belies that it is a favourable concept because solar energy can be applied in diversified ways which further maximise its usage.

Theme 5: Solar energy is cost efficient

Q5 Do you think that Solar energy is cost efficient?

Frequency

A) Yes

25

B) No

3

C) Do not know

2

Interpretation: Efficiency of any resource depends much on its cost too. It is again in favour of the solar power as 25 people believes that this a cost efficient process. Other 3 people do not agree with same and consider it to be an expensive process and rest remaining two people has no idea about the cost which is associated with solar power.

Theme 6: Technology of storing solar energy can have considered as major breakthrough in energy industry

Q6 ''The technology of storing solar energy can have considered as major breakthrough in energy industry''. Do you agree with this statement?

Frequency

A) Agree

22

B) Disagree

3

C) Partially agree

5

Interpretation: According to the views of 22 people solar energy has brought a vast change in the overall industry of power which shows that there is significant change in the energy as maximum people has supported this view. Only 5 respondents are not completely in support of this fact and believes that only some variations are made in the sector by the solar energy. Lastly remaining 3 completely oppose this idea and says no change is brought.

Conclusion and Recommendation

From the above research report this has been concluded that solar cells are effective in the creation of energy and is now widely in use. It is found that the PV cells are effective enough in bringing a positive change in the energy industry and hence there should be more investment made in this sector so that overall growth can be maintained (Scheer, 2013). It is important that the installation of its plant is done effectively so that maximum utilisation of resources can be made. It is found in the above study that with the help of PV cells energy in great quantity can be produced. It is therefore recommended that improvement in the storage batteries technology should be there so that he benefits of such resources can be enhanced. Also the awareness about the photovoltaic cell needs to be enhanced in the public as there are people in the society who doesn’t even know what it is or has very limited knowledge regarding same. This is also suggested that more consideration should be given in reducing the total cost of implementation of the solar plants as this will further boost the concept and hence development of society will be ensured.

References

Books and Journals

  • Bollinger, B. and Gillingham, K., 2012. Peer effects in the diffusion of solar photovoltaic panels.Marketing Science,31(6), pp.900-912.
  • Camacho, E.F. and Berenguel, M., 2012. Control of solar energy systems.IFAC Proceedings Volumes,45(15), pp.848-855.
  • Denholm, P. and Mehos, M., 2014. Enabling greater penetration of solar power via the use of CSP with thermal energy storage.Solar Energy: Application, Economics, and Public Perception,99.
  • Fonash, S., 2012.Solar cell device physics. Elsevier.
  • Kannan, N. and Vakeesan, D., 2016. Solar energy for future world:-A review.Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews,62, pp.1092-1105.
  • Lewis, N.S., 2016. Research opportunities to advance solar energy utilization.Science,351(6271), p.aad1920.
  • Lewis, N.S., 2016. Research opportunities to advance solar energy utilization.Science,351(6271), p.aad1920.
  • Li, G., Zhu, R. and Yang, Y., 2012. Polymer solar cells.Nature photonics,6(3), p.153.
  • Mishra, A. and Bäuerle, P., 2012. Small molecule organic semiconductors on the move: promises for future solar energy technology.Angewandte Chemie International Edition,51(9), pp.2020-2067.
  • Palit, D., 2013. Solar energy programs for rural electrification: Experiences and lessons from South Asia.Energy for Sustainable Development,17(3), pp.270-279.
  • Powell, K.M. and Edgar, T.F., 2012. Modeling and control of a solar thermal power plant with thermal energy storage.Chemical Engineering Science,71, pp.138-145.
  • Scheer, H., 2013.The solar economy: Renewable energy for a sustainable global future. Routledge.
  • Sukhatme, S.P. and Nayak, J.K., 2017.Solar energy. McGraw-Hill Education.
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