A lively and authoritative account of today s photovoltaic (PV) technology and its practical applications This book covers areas including: * a brief history of PV, and the current international scene; * the scientific principles of solar cells including silicon and new thin-film varieties; * PV modules and arrays; * grid-connected PV, from home systems up to large power plants; * the wide diversity of stand-alone PV systems, and; * the economic and environmental aspects of solar electricity. Key equations and numerical examples are fully discussed, providing essential theoretical background. The text is supported by copious illustrations and more than eighty inspiring full colour photographs from around the world to demonstrate PV s huge range of practical applications. This book is aimed at a wide readership including professionals working in related areas, and students taking introductory courses in PV and renewable energy. Its style and level will also appeal to energy planners and decision makers, members of environmental organisations, and the increasing number of people interested in generating their own electricity from sunlight.