Many researches showed that the cost of the energy produced by photovoltaic (PV) concentrators is strongly reduced with respect to flat panels, especially in those countries that have a high solar irradiation. The cost drop comes from the reduction of the expensive high-efficiency photovoltaic surface through the use of optical concentrators of the solar radiation. In this paper, an experimental innovative PV low-concentration system is analysed. Numerical simulations were performed to determine the possible reasons of energy losses in the prototype, primarily due to geometrical factors. In particular, the effect of the shadows produced from the mirrors on the prototype performances was analysed: shadows are often neglected in the design phase of such systems. The study demonstrates that shadows may affect the performances of a hypothetical optimized PV low-concentration system up to 15%. Finally, an economical evaluation was carried out comparing the proposed optimized system to a traditional flat PV panel.

Evaluation and Optimization of an Innovative Low-Cost Photovoltaic Solar Concentrator

COTANA, Franco;ROSSI, Federico;NICOLINI, ANDREA
2011

Abstract

Many researches showed that the cost of the energy produced by photovoltaic (PV) concentrators is strongly reduced with respect to flat panels, especially in those countries that have a high solar irradiation. The cost drop comes from the reduction of the expensive high-efficiency photovoltaic surface through the use of optical concentrators of the solar radiation. In this paper, an experimental innovative PV low-concentration system is analysed. Numerical simulations were performed to determine the possible reasons of energy losses in the prototype, primarily due to geometrical factors. In particular, the effect of the shadows produced from the mirrors on the prototype performances was analysed: shadows are often neglected in the design phase of such systems. The study demonstrates that shadows may affect the performances of a hypothetical optimized PV low-concentration system up to 15%. Finally, an economical evaluation was carried out comparing the proposed optimized system to a traditional flat PV panel.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11391/264289
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