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differences between solar and photocells


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Can some people please explain the differences between solar cells and



Is it only, solar cells use photoelectric effect to create current and photocells use the effect to detect light.


THank you in advance

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there isn`t all that much difference to be honest, Solar cells are limited to generating electrical current only, whereas Photocells may do that also, but frequently are used as a resistor that alters its resistance upon exposure to light. so a photocell can be both as the definition is quite loose :)




edit: moved to engineering, so no more duplicate threads please :)

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I will use a solar cell if I want to run something using the power from the sun.


I will use a photoelectric sensor if I want to turn something on or off (when there is light around).

Say, if I want a street lamp to go on at night.


one is replacing a battery and the other is replacing a switch.




a plant leaf is the biological version of a solar cell, it gets lots energy from the sun and lets all the living creatures on earth use it in the form of food.


Your eye is similar to a photoelectric sensor ( but much more complicated )

as it basically conveys data rather than large amounts of energy.

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