My inspiration was this: Could solar power be utilized and substitute coal in the 19th century?
My world is this: Rail Transportation with Races Described Below - Specifically, Seating
My people are 2,000 years into the future, and 1,900 years from a nuclear war that made humans leave. Humans are back on the scene, but have only been around for 200 years.
Roughly 60 years before the setting, an adventuring party consisting of a female Pharera Cleric of Esuna (Goddess of Love/Death), a male Drava Diviner, a male Human Rogue, and a female Gern Barbarian discovered blueprints for solar panels in the Andes (Specifically, in the ruins of Lima) and brought it to their Drava employers, who were only expecting undead and demons in the ruins. Drava being Drava, they enlisted the help of humans to develop the technology. Once they got the tech down pat, they began using the tech to make prototype of a solar panel-powered steam engines.
Once this was done, a wealthy Avandra man, who ran a textile company, took one look at the article in his newspaper, saw dollar signs scribbled all over it (Metaphorically), and asked the sage responsible for inventing the solar panel if he could have more made to power a large cotton spinning mill, using the solar power as fuel for machines. The sage didn't really have much to show for the solar power being useful, but she did have a few dozen people making them, so she accepted. A few years later (50 years to the setting), the Avandra had several textile factories and was crushing his business competitors by pioneering mass production.
By this time, a Na'vi business advisor of the Avandra, Neytiri, saw that the little workshop he depended on for solar panels was just too slow for future expansion. The Avandra, upon hearing this, uttered the most famous words of the earliest industrial revolution - "Neytiri, solar panels don't just sprout off trees! If you want more of them, make 'em yourself!"
This gave Neytiri the defining idea that led the world into the upward, inescapable spiral to the industrial revolution part 2 - Use the Avandra's ideas for mass producing textiles and put it into making the solar panels. A few years later (46 years to setting), she had a big factory of her own, supplying several other people with big ideas with solar panels. She also hired the sage responsible for inventing the solar panels for Research and Development. Neytiri was so successful that the company she founded with only the sage and a few thousand dollars, Neytiri Solar Panels, still holds a near monopoly on the solar panel industry and a Thanalan Civilian Medal of Honor (The highest medal a Thanalan civilian can earn) from Neytiri hung in the CEO office room in the office building the business runs from, along with the honor of almost single-handedly starting the Industrial Revolution for a second time.
However, I don't know if your average 19th Century society, even one as rich as America IRL, could create a solar panel, even one with a blueprint for the panels. If a 19th Century society COULD form solar panels, please tell me how.
Here are the materials for a Solar Panel:
- POLYCRYSTALLINE Silicon
My basic question is: Have these 3 materials been around since at least 1750?