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Photosynthesis in plants is the process through which light energy is converted to chemical energy and stored as sugars. Semiconductor based solar cell are devices present in solar cells that absorb energy to facilitate separation of electrons from heat waves. These two systems are similar in the fact that they use sunlight as their source of energy. For these processes to occur, Cells to trap sun energy must be present. There is always the transformation of light into something useful. In both processes, chloroplasts and semiconductors have adapted to achieve higher absorption coefficient. This is because they are located near the surface of the leaves and solar panel respectively in order to trap as much light as possible. In both processes, electrons are lost.
The difference between the two processes is that in photosynthesis, electrons lost are refilled when water splitting occurs and in solar cells electrons are refilled when the circuit is complete. In photosynthesis, light energy is converted into chemical energy for food while semiconductors convert light energy to electricity. Photosynthesis is a chemical process while in semiconductors, it’s a physical process. Photosynthesis takes place naturally in leaves while conversion of light to electricity in a solar cell and is factory designed. In photosynthesis, ATP carries energy that is converted to chemical energy when there is no light but conversion of light in solar cells cannot occur when there is no light.
The second law of thermodynamics states that all natural processes are irreversible and energy transfer is unidirectional. In photosynthesis, Chlorophyll molecules knock of high energy electron to generate ATP that is used to synthesize glucose.
First law of thermodynamic is also called the Law of conservation of energy. It states that energy is constant as it cannot be created or destroyed but can be transferred in many forms. In semiconductor solar cell, energy from the sun is converted to electricity.