How Semiconductors Power Clean Energy

Semiconductors add value to the electricity generation processes by streamlining the operations and minimizing energy losses.

FREMONT, CA: Semiconductors have immense potential to enhance energy generation and reduce procurement expenses. Semiconductors can also be used to condition power from wind turbines and solar arrays in a way that energy can be fed into the electric grid and used by electrical equipment. The photovoltaic (PV) cells that comprise solar panels depend on semiconductor materials to transmit light energy from the sun into potential energy that can be transmitted to the grid. According to AZoCleantech, semiconductors can play a key role in ensuring optimal harvest of renewable energy.  

The semiconductors’ capacity for allowing electricity to transmit through them at a modulated rate allows them to transform energy harnessed from other renewable energy technologies such as hydropower and wind turbines. In this scenario, semiconductors act as efficient rectifiers, smoothening, or rectifying the energy harnessed from clean energy sources so that it can be transmitted to the electric grid with minimal loss of energy in the process. Usually, the semiconductors are installed on secondary devices such as drives and pumps in case of wind and water turbines, sensors in drives solar panels, and protection circuits in transfer stations and energy conversion to ensure that the overall operations run efficiently with minimal loss of power. 

Although semiconductors have a role to play in harnessing clean energy, large semiconductor manufacturing facilities also need large amounts of energy, ranging up to 100-megawatt hours of energy per hour. Semiconductor materials can be used to offset this demand with the help of the internet of things (IoT) technology. This capability can monitor and automate semiconductor fabrication, ensuring the requirement of minimal energy resources.

Increasingly, firms are relying on semiconductors to enhance their operations and optimize the transmission of electric energy generated from various renewable sources.