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When considering solar panel physics, are we taking an electron from Light(photon), or is the energy of Light causing an electron to jump in said solar cells through excitation? Is the photon even changing its level of energy when it makes contact? If so, is it coming from the electron levels of the "matter" (depiction of Light) or the electro-magnetic field of Light (depiction of Light as a wave)?

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TL; DR Short answer is the energy from the photon causes the electron to jump. Conservation of energy dictates that the photon would lose some energy, and it would be from the particle matter that it would act this way.

Long Answer

This is called the photoelectric effect. photoelectric effect visualized http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/imgmod2/pelec.gif Basically this is caused by an energy transfer from a photon, acting as a particle from wave-particle duality, to the atoms that the photocell is made of. The energy is being transferred from the photon, in the end the photon does lose some energy to the electron. In some cases the photon can be completely absorbed by the electron electron absorption which leads to absorption lines of gases. If the total energy of the Photon is equal to the work function then the photon will be absorbed and the electron will contain all of its energy. The energy of the photon after collision can be visualized with the Compton effect. compton effect http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/quantum/imgqua/compton.gif

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