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This work presents a novel solar energy application to an illumination system that connects a photovoltaic (PV) array, battery energy storage system (BESS) and load by combining a class-E resonant inverter with a fluorescent lamp. Without a power converter between the BESS and electronic ballast stage, no power processing loss occurs between these components; therefore, the developed system reduced power losses. The proposed topology is very simple and requires a single active power switch. Carefully selected circuit parameters enable the active power switch to be driven directly by BESS and operated at zero-voltage switching, yielding high circuit efficiency. A prototype circuit that is designed for a PL-27W compact fluorescent lamp is constructed and tested to verify the theoretical predictions. The measured efficiency of the electronic ballast is as high as 94.33%. Experimental results show the functionality of the overall system and prove it to be an effective solution for numerous photovoltaic applications.