Meaning of PHOTOCELL in English


or photoelectric cell or electric eye

cathode that emits electrons when illuminated and an {{link=anode">anode for collecting the emitted electrons.

Illumination excites electrons, which are attracted to the anode, producing current proportional to the intensity of the illumination. In a photovoltaic cell, light is used to produce voltage. In a photoconductive cell, light is used to regulate the flow of current. Photocells are used in control systems, where interrupting a beam of light opens a circuit, actuating a relay that supplies power to a mechanism to bring about a desired operation, such as opening a door or setting off a burglar alarm. Photocells are also used in photometry and spectroscopy .

Britannica English dictionary.      Английский словарь Британика.