The History of Solar Panels and How They Work

Despite the UK’s reputation for bad weather, the humble solar cell still has great potential over here. In addition to the fact that they work in cloudy and overcast conditions, new breakthroughs have made PV cells safer and cheaper than ever, the perfect addition for British homeowners. It might help to know exactly where these devices came from and how they work though so you can better understand their place in our society.

A History of Solar Power

While most people think of solar as a recent phenomenon, work and interest in this area actually goes back over a hundred years. Some important dates that led up to the invention of the first solar cell include:

  • In 1767, the first solar collector, in fact a solar oven, was created by Horace-Benedict de Saussure.
  • In 1865, Auguste Mouchout produced a prototype solar motor and created the world’s first solar powered steam engine.
  • In 1873, Willoughby Smith discovered that selenium could conduct and convert solar energy. Initial prototypes weren’t successful.
  • In 1891, the inventor, Clarence Kemp, invented the world’s first solar heater.
  • In 1893, Charles Fritts created the world’s first solar cell by coating sheets of selenium with thin layers of gold.

From these beginnings, solar energy then continued to develop over the years. In fact, almost all present solar conversion methods were invented before WW1. Once war arrived though, the need for cheaper, more efficient technology drove up the demand for fossil fuels and pushed solar power to the sidelines for the next 50 years.

We now sit at a resurgence of solar technology, with renewed interest in this technology all over the globe. Solar cells are becoming more efficient while being cheaper and safer to produce. Unfortunately, the influence of the fossil fuel industry still puts these renewable energy devices at risk of fading into obscurity for a second time. The world must come together to stop this from happening, especially with global warming as a reality.

How the Photovoltaic Cell Works

A PV cell has one job: converting sunlight into electricity. The key component that allows it to do this is the semiconductor sheet found within. This can be made from silicone although newer solar panels now use better thin film technology which is created from crystal blends such as copper-indium-gallium-selenide. When the sunlight hits a PV cell, several things happen:

  1. The photons in the light hit the semiconductor atoms
  2. An electron absorbs the energy and is knocked up into a higher energy level
  3. This electron is driven by an electric field that runs through the cell and is turned into an electric current

The field is created by the properties of the semiconductor that makes up the cell. Let us say we’re using silicone. By adding certain materials, we can create two types, one positively and one negatively charged. This is because one contains excess electrons and the other lacks in electrons.

By forming two plates of different silicone types, we have positive and negative poles which then create an electric field in-between. When the electron is knocked off by a photon, it can then move through a cell in an orderly manner thanks to this field. Because each electron is moving in the same way, this forms a current which can then be used to power all manner of devices.

Some mention should also be made of the power efficiency of solar cells. Simply put, power efficiency is the percentage of light that is converted into electricity. Although PV cells in satellites convert 50% of the photons that hit them into usable electricity, these are very expensive to make. At a lower price tag, present-day, domestic cells usually feature a power efficiency of around 17%. Hopefully, we’ll see solar systems becoming cheaper to produce with new technological advances which will then simultaneously make them more efficient as well.

Hopefully this has been an informative look at where the typical solar cell has come from and what it can do for us today. These are crucial devices when it comes to beating climate change and stopping global warming and it is important that we know as much about them as possible so we can make a better world.


Rental Scenario in Jaipur

Capital city of the erstwhile princely state of Rajasthan, also known as the pink city, jaipur is full of heritage and culture. It is one of the most important hub for tourism in India, with tourists, both national and international flocking to have a look at the forts and culture of the state of Rajasthan, and jaipur being the gateway. Having a sound education system, the city has also been home to a huge service sector, attracting people from all over the country. This has ensured that the property market is well fed with constant activity both, in the form of sale purchase and rentals.

With the efforts of the state government, the pricing of the houses has been kept in check, by the launch of cheap and affordable accommodation. This has resulted in a lot of investors investing in the city. Jaipur has witnessed a lot of investment from the NRI who have shown a lot of faith in the demand in the real estate sector. The prices are steadily increasing and the investors are a happy lot. The city has also seen a lot of activity in the rental property market. The demand has been increasing for rental properties and many investors have resorted to letting out their properties for an added income. The affordable price of the property has attracted a lot of people from outside the state, who have invested with the sole aim of providing house for rent and enjoying the rental income.

Information and Technology has been one of the main reasons for increase in demand of rental properties. Jaipur proximity to the national capital and a great connectivity has seen a lot of people converge on this city for employment. IT and ITeS sector has provided a plethora of work opportunities to the youth from outside as well as from the state itself. This influx of manpower, with good salaries has resulted in a huge demand for house for rent in Jaipur. As these people have migrated from different states and cities, they are keener on renting a house rather than buying one. This has worked in favor of the investors who are getting decent returns every month. A smart investor would invest in property keeping in mind some basic rental tips as it sure goes a long way in ensuring not only high returns from the property but also a steady monthly income.

  • One should always try to invest in a residential property near commercial hot spots. Office areas always attract more customers who are on the lookout for residential space near to their office. This not only results in easy availability of tenants but also ensures higher rent.
  • Rajasthan is a major tourist hub and Jaipur is its gateway. A lot of foreigners travel to Rajasthan and spend a lot of time exploring the history and culture. These foreigners can be tapped and the property rented out to them. They are comfortable in giving better rent than the prevailing market rates even.
  • Converting your property into service apartment is also a good idea. With so much tourist inflow, service apartments provide a cheaper accommodation than hotels to the travelers and the landlords get a higher return. It’s a win-win situation. With lot of corporate travelers too visiting Jaipur often due to its high ITeS industry, service apartments can fetch good clientele as well as good revenue.

Although these tips would ensure high income, one should be aware that there are some points which must be kept in mind while letting out the property. Whenever giving a house for rent in Jaipur, one must ensure proper paper work and go for an agreement. A background check of the tenant is also a must and government or corporate clients who have transferable jobs should be preferred as they have to leave the city in few years thereby ensuring that the property is not illegally occupied.

Being a freelance Marketing and Human Resource consultant for the last 17 years, Manoj Malhotra has had the opportunity to gain exposure and thorough knowledge about people and their behavioral patterns and an insight into varied fields.”

Top 10 Steel Building Types

Steel buildings have become a choice for many in society today. There are various reasons why this is the case. First, steel buildings are durable and highly customisable. When working with professionals, clients can get exactly what they want from customisation to bespoke solutions within a short time-frame. Consequently, there are myriads of applications when it comes to these buildings. The following is a highlight of top 10 steel building types that you will find in today’s modern climate. It is worth mentioning that clients can choose to have both commercial and residential buildings to suit their needs. Let’s start by looking at the commercial uses.


1. Spray painting booths

These booths require a strong and secure building that will be large enough to fit vehicles. In most cases, business people will prefer steel buildings owing to their versatility. Spray booths need to be dry and cool where paint can dry and have the best possible finish. The construction of these buildings is done using specialised engineers in the field to undergo the correct procedures in ensuring it suits the spray painter’s requirements. These booths are some of the most common commercial applications.

2. Car showrooms

Today, businesses can secure their vehicles on display a wide selection of cars to their customers. With the use of steel buildings vehicles are not just protected from the elements but they do not have to be moved daily. With these buildings, people can have large spaces as they wish as well as tailored designs. Additionally, security to the cars on display is enhanced greatly allowing peace of mind to the car dealership to help protect their investment of goods.

3. Office space

This is probably a dream come true for many companies. Offices created using steel are not just cheaper than the conventional kinds but they are well articulated to meet all the individual needs of a company. There are no security concerns because the buildings are sturdy and secure. Many good steel building companies will help customise the buildings with the help of their client to deliver a perfect working environment that suits both company and employees. Always work with galvanised steel dealers who have a certification from the authorities or valid testimonials of other work with clients when setting up.

4. Factory units

Many commercial ventures have greatly benefited from using steel buildings for their factory units. Because of the strength, safety and space merits, factories thrive in such settings.


5. Boat houses

Steel buildings are also used for boathouses. Steel buildings are perfect for boats as they can help protect against any weathering effects that might harm your boat. Required specifications are delivered to cater to all the needs of boats stored. With the ease of extending a boathouse as and when sizes of boats come in to play this makes a fantastic cost-effective solution.

Some of the residential applications for these buildings are as follows;

6. Garages

They are an excellent solution to your garage needs. People can opt to go for single, double and even triple garages as they desire.

7. Living space

Steel framed buildings are good enough to create quality residential units. They are fortified with vital elements to customise a sound living area. Additionally, you can have a working area created as well. This convenience is invaluable.

8. Hobby or play house

Do you have a hobby that you adore? If yes, creating good space using steel is a solution. No matter your hobby, expert steel building companies should be in a position to deliver on the ideal play or hobby house.

9. Home workshop

This is the simplest way to turn your home into a production area to undertake your tasks. This place can even host people and depending on your area of profession or desired use, it is a great way to optimise space.


10. Storage

If you are struggling with heavy and bulky items, you can have a steel building built for storage purposes. It is the safest place to store your items. Some people will use it to store commercial items that they sell in their line of business or simply to store stuff.
With steel buildings there are many more valuable cost-effective eco-friendly solutions. All of the above ideas can also come in steel building kits so you can put together the structure yourself. To find out more on various steel structures including agricultural buildings visit today for more information.