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Research Papers

Optical and Thermal Simulations of Photovoltaic Modules With and Without Sun Tracking System

[+] Author and Article Information
Tahere Zarei

Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Graduate University of Advanced Technology,
Kerman 76315-117, Iran
e-mail: taherehzareilar@gmail.com

Morteza Abdolzadeh

Assistant Professor
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Graduate University of Advanced Technology,
End of Haft Bagh Highway,
Kerman 76315-117, Iran
e-mail: m.abdolzadeh@kgut.ac.ir

1Corresponding author.

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING: INCLUDING WIND ENERGY AND BUILDING ENERGY CONSERVATION. Manuscript received April 24, 2015; final manuscript received September 14, 2015; published online October 20, 2015. Assoc. Editor: Mary Jane Hale.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 138(1), 011001 (Oct 20, 2015) (12 pages) Paper No: SOL-15-1105; doi: 10.1115/1.4031684 History: Received April 24, 2015; Revised September 14, 2015

The experimental method is extensively used to determine the temperature of a photovoltaic (PV) module at different hours of a day. In this method, the module temperature is measured using a temperature sensor mounted on the back of PV module. However, the experimental measurements have high cost and are not applicable everywhere. In this study, an optical–thermal model was used to predict all the PV module layer temperatures in two cases: tilted toward the south and fixed on a two-axis sun tracker. The impact of accurate consideration of the wind velocity and the ambient temperature on the PV module temperature was the main strength of the present simulation. This was carried out testing several correlations for prediction of convection heat transfer coefficient in the modeling process. The front and back layer temperatures as well as the silicon (Si) layer temperature of PV module were separately determined. To verify the results of the simulation, the temperatures of four PV modules measured in four different locations of the world, namely, China, Germany, Australia, and Brazil, were used. The results showed that the present study predicts the temperature of PV module more accurately compared to the previous studies. It was also shown that the average temperature errors between the measured and the predicted temperatures relative to the maximum module temperature were 2.19%, 2.3%, and 2.85%, for Australia, Brazil, and Germany, respectively.

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Different layers of the PV module [10]

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Fig. 2

View of the refractions and reflections on a three-layer system

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Fig. 3

View of the reverse refractions and reflections on a three-layer system

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Fig. 4

The thermal resistances of the PV module: part I—Si, glass, and Tedlar, part II—the first three layers (i.e., glass, EVA, and ARC), and part III—last two layers (i.e., EVA and Tedlar)

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Fig. 5

Wind speed and c1 variation during the test day in China

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Fig. 6

(a) Prediction of PV module temperature and its comparison with Lu and Yao [10] results and (b) solar radiation intensity of the PV module fixed at 45 deg tilt angle in Shanghai, China

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Fig. 7

Incident solar radiation on the PV module fixed at 23 deg tilt angle in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (March 21, 1999)

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Fig. 8

Comparison of (a) absorption and transmission of 3, 4, and 6 encapsulated layers of PV module and (b) absorption, reflection, and transmission of the first three-layers fixed at 23 deg tilt angle in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (March 21, 1999)

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Fig. 9

Wind speed and C1 variation during the test day in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (March 21, 1999)

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Fig. 10

Prediction of PV module temperature and its comparison with Krauter [26] results for the PV module fixed at 23 deg tilt angle in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (March 21, 1999)

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Fig. 11

Incident solar radiation on the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Sydney, Australia (March 21, 1994)

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Fig. 12

Comparison of (a) absorption and transmission of 3, 4 and, 6 encapsulated layers and (b) absorption, reflection, and transmission of the first three-layers of the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Australia (March 21, 1994)

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Fig. 13

(a) Prediction of PV module temperature and its comparison with experimental results [5] and (b) the wind speed and C1 variation throughout the test day for the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Australia (31°S, 140°E) (March 21, 1994)

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Fig. 14

Prediction of PV module temperature and its comparison with the experimental results and the analytical results (the spice software) [5]

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Fig. 15

Incident solar radiation on the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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Fig. 16

Comparison of (a) absorption and transmission of 3, 4 and, 6 encapsulated layers and (b) absorption, reflection, and transmission of the first three-layers of the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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Fig. 17

(a) Prediction of PV module temperature and its comparison with experimental results [30] and (b) the wind speed and variation through the test day for the PV module fixed at 30 deg tilt angle in Berlin, Germany (July 21,1995)

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Fig. 18

Incident solar radiation on the PV module with the tracker and tilted PV module (30 deg) in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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Fig. 19

Optimum azimuth and tilt angles for the PV module during the test in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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Fig. 20

Absorption (a) and transmission (b) coefficients of three encapsulated layers of the PV module with and without tracker during the test day in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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Fig. 21

Module temperatures with and without sun trackers during the test day in Berlin, Germany (July 21, 1995)

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