An experimental study on the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells

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An experimental study on the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells

 

Author: Lai, Chun-wai
Title: An experimental study on the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells
Degree: M.Eng.
Year: 2005
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Solar cells
Silicon crystals
Photovoltaic cells
Photovoltaic power generation
Department: Dept. of Building Services Engineering
Pages: 1 v. (various pagings) : ill. (chiefly col.) ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1810017
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/5225
Abstract: This study examines the characteristics and performances of crystalline silicon solar cells. Since the application of building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) systems in Hong Kong buildings has grown dramatically in recent years, it is very important to investigate crystalline silicon solar cells as a fundamental unit of photovoltaic (PV) devices. Based on the studies of other researchers on the PV power generation systems, this study is to develop a mathematical model to theoretically describe the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells and evaluate the solar cell performances at various solar radiation and solar cell temperature conditions. The study helps to explore the effects of solar radiation and solar cell temperature on the performances of crystalline silicon solar cells. The research method in this study involves a mathematical model development and an experimental set up. The mathematical model based on the concept of two-diode equivalent model was developed in which eight parameters in the model were determined by using a numerical technique called Downhill Simplex Method and FORTRAN program. A solar cell tester, which complies with the requirements of the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standard, was set up to experimentally study the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells. The findings suggest that the solar cell tester is the quality equipment in PV power generation industry for academic research purposes, industrial application and solar cell development due to the variation of the measurement was merely +- 5.0%. The results also indicate that the mathematical model has high quality and accuracy to simlulate the characteristics of crystalline silicon solar cells because of the dissimilarity between simulated and experimental was within +- 10.0 %. The simulated results corresponded closely to the experimental results when the solar radiation and solar cell temperature were relatively low and vice versa. The underlying reason leading the higher disparity at high range of solar radiation and solar cell temperature is that the effect of solar cell series resistance was ignored in the mathematical model. Finally, solar radiation and solar cell temperature seem to be the crucial factors in influencing the crystalline silicon solar cell characteristics and performances. The evidence suggests that the working current and short-circuit current were dependent on solar radiation whereas the working voltage and open-circuit voltage were dependent on solar cell temperature. The results also indicate that the largest power output and the highest solar cell power conversion efficiency appears when the highest solar radiation and the lowest solar radiation conditions are achieved.

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