WASHINGTON, April 25, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Following is the daily "Profile America" feature from the U.S. Census Bureau:
A HIGHER POWER
Profile America — Monday, April 25th. On this date in 1954, Bell Laboratories in New York announced the prototype manufacture of a new solar battery, or what we now call a solar cell. The new cell was capable of a 6 percent energy conversion efficiency with direct sunlight, as opposed to about a 1 percent rate with earlier creations. In a demonstration for the press, the Bell inventors placed the array of several small silicon strips in sunlight. The cell captured the free electrons and turned them into electrical current, powering the rotation of a 21-inch Ferris wheel. In the U.S. today, solar energy powers nearly 83,000 homes. Thirty-three domestic businesses manufacture solar cells, with annual revenue of about $815 billion. You can find more facts about America from the U.S. Census Bureau online at www.census.gov.
Sources: Kane's Famous First Facts, 3558
Contemporary story/accessed 2/1/2016: http://www.rfcafe.com/references/popular-electronics/solar-battery-oct-1954-popular-electronics.htm
Ferris wheel/accessed 2/1/2016: http://www.popsci.com/article/science/invention-solar-cell
Household solar power: http://factfinder.census.gov/faces/tableservices/jsf/pages/productview.xhtml?pid=ACS_14_1YR_B25040&prodType=table
Solar cell manufacturing /NAICS 334413c1/accessed 2/1/2106: http://www.ibisworld.com/industry/default.aspx?indid=754\
Profile America is produced by the Center for New Media and Promotion of the U.S. Census Bureau. These daily features are available as produced segments, ready to air, on the Internet at http://www.census.gov (look for "Audio" in the "Library" pull-down menu).
SOURCE U.S. Census Bureau