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[foh-toh-vol-tey-ik, -vohl-] /ˌfoʊ toʊ vɒlˈteɪ ɪk, -voʊl-/
adjective, Electricity
of or relating to the photovoltaic effect.
Origin of photovoltaic
1920-25; photo- + voltaic Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for photovoltaic
  • Powered by an array of photovoltaic panels, the retreat is totally energy independent.
  • The college is switching to hybrid vehicles for its fleet and is installing photovoltaic panels on buildings.
  • Solar requires huge areas for arrays whether photovoltaic panels or concentrated solar.
  • Here, the exterior will sport photovoltaic cells to collect solar power and make the building energy self-sufficient.
  • Thanks to photovoltaic technology, any sunny rooftop can be converted into a solar power generator.
  • Solar photovoltaic panels produce direct-current electricity.
  • Down below, a field of photovoltaic panels struggled for light.
  • Solar panels, or photovoltaic cells, are semiconductors made up of silicon atoms that convert the sun's energy into electricity.
  • The two main types of solar farm are photovoltaic and parabolic.
  • photovoltaic cells, found in solar panels, convert the sun's energy into electricity.
British Dictionary definitions for photovoltaic


of, concerned with, or producing electric current or voltage caused by electromagnetic radiation, esp visible light from the sun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for photovoltaic

1923, from photo- + voltaic. Related: Photovoltaics (see -ics).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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photovoltaic in Science
  (fō'tō-vŏl-tā'ĭk, -vōl-)   
Capable of producing a voltage, usually through photoemission, when exposed to radiant energy, especially light. See more at photoelectric, solar cell.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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