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Photosynthesis vs Semiconductor Based Solar Cell

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Submitted By banapule
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When it comes to photosynthesis and semiconductor-base solar cells they have many similarities as well as differences. In this paper I will explain to you exactly what they are. I will also point out how the laws of thermodynamics apply to both processes.
One major similarity between photosynthesis and semiconductor-based solar cells is that they both require solar energy or sunlight for the process to begin. Photosynthesis’ main function is to transform solar energy into the chemical energy of a carbohydrate (McGraw-Hill Learning Solutions, 2009 p. 86). Energy from the sun is absorbed by chlorophyll, which is a pigment in the chloroplasts (membrane bound organelle in algae and plants with chlorophyll, where photosynthesis takes place) of plants. Once in the chloroplasts the energy is used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen. The hydrogen then combines with carbon dioxide to make sugars and energy-storing compounds. A solar cell is a device that converts solar energy into light at the atomic level. When light energy strikes the solar cell, electrons are knocked loose from the atoms in the semiconductor material (NASA Science).
Another thing that they have in common is that man kind also relies on both processes for survival. During photosynthesis food and oxygen are produced, and carbon dioxide is removed from the air and without solar energy we wouldn’t have electricity.
Another similarity is that during the process they both lose electrons. When the electrons are lost in solar cells they are replenished once the electrical circuit is complete. In photosynthesis the electrons lost by the pigments are replaced by splitting water.

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