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Solar Technology related terms beginning with I.




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  • Incident Light : Light that shines onto the face of a solar cell or module.

  • Indium Oxide : A wide band gap semiconductor that can be heavily doped with tin to make a highly conductive, transparent thin film. Often used as a front contact or one component of a heterojunction solar cell.

  • Infrared Radiation : Electromagnetic radiation whose wavelengths lie in the range from 0.75 micrometer to 1000 micrometers; invisible long wavelength radiation (heat) capable of producing a thermal or photovoltaic effect, though less effective than visible light.

  • Input Voltage : This is determined by the total power required by the alternating current loads and the voltage of any direct current loads. Generally, the larger the load, the higher the inverter input voltage. This keeps the current at levels where switches and other components are readily available.

  • Insolation : The solar power density incident on a surface of stated area and orientation, usually expressed as Watts per square meter or Btu per square foot per hour. See diffuse insolation and direct insolation.

  • Interconnect : A conductor within a module or other means of connection that provides an electrical interconnection between the solar cells.

  • Intrinsic Layer : A layer of semiconductor material, used in a photovoltaic device, whose properties are essentially those of the pure, undoped, material.

  • Intrinsic Semiconductor : An undoped semiconductor.

  • Inverter : A device that converts direct current electricity to alternating current either for stand-alone systems or to supply power to an electricity grid.

  • Ion : An electrically charged atom or group of atoms that has lost or gained electrons; a loss makes the resulting particle positively charged; a gain makes the particle negatively charged.

  • Irradiance : The direct, diffuse, and reflected solar radiation that strikes a surface. Usually expressed in kilowatts per square meter. Irradiance multiplied by time equals insolation.

  • ISPRA Guidelines : Guidelines for the assessment of photovoltaic power plants, published by the Joint Research Centre of the Commission of the European Communities, Ispra, Italy.

  • I-Type Semiconductor : Semiconductor material that is left intrinsic, or undoped so that the concentration of charge carriers is characteristic of the material itself rather than of added impurities.

  • I-V Curve : A graphical presentation of the current versus the voltage from a photovoltaic device as the load is increased from the short circuit (no load) condition to the open circuit (maximum voltage) condition. The shape of the curve characterizes cell performance.

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