the phenomenon in which the incidence of light or other electromagnetic radiation upon the junction of two dissimilar materials, as a metal and a semiconductor, induces the generation of an electromotive force.
Electric-field control over domain structure allows the photovoltaic effect to be reversed in polarity or turned off.
The photovoltaic effect can be produced with dozens of materials.
British Dictionary definitions for photovoltaic effect
the effect observed when electromagnetic radiation, esp visibile light from the sun, falls on a thin film of one solid deposited on the surface of a dissimilar solid producing a difference in potential between the two materials