photoelectric cell meaning

  "photoelectric cell" in a sentence
  • Noun: photoelectric cell  `fowtowi'lektrik sel
    1. A transducer used to detect and measure light and other radiations
      - photoconductive cell, photocell, electric eye, magic eye

    Derived forms: photoelectric cells

    Type of: detector, sensing element, sensor, transducer

    Encyclopedia: Photoelectric cell

  • [Architecture]

    A device incorporated in an electric circuit; in response to light that falls on the cell, the electrical output or the resistance varies; used in measuring devices and in control devices that depend on illumination level or the interruption of a light beam.

  • [Electronics]
    A device that converts infrared, visible-light, or ultraviolet energy into electricity or electrical effects. It can function by producing a voltage (see PHOTOVOLTAIC CELL, SELENIUM CELL, SILICON CELL, SOLAR CELL, and SUN BATTERY) or by acting as a light-sensitive resistor (see LIGHT-SENSITIVE DIODE, PHOTOCONDUCTIVE CELL, and SELENIUM CELL).


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  1. the photoelectric cell controls a servomotor.
  2. The transformer includes a timer or photoelectric cell to activate the lights.
  3. The development of the photoelectric cell by Jakob Kunz revolutionized astronomical photometry.
  4. Illinois physics professor Jakob Kunz suggested that Stebbins try a photoelectric cell.
  5. The light pen itself had a small photoelectric cell in its tip.

Related Words

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