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Energies 2015, 8(5), 4529-4548; doi:10.3390/en8054529

Numerical Validation of a New Approach to Model Single Junction Low Concentration PV Cells under Non-Uniform Illumination

1
Institute of Sustainable Energy Technology, Department of Architecture and Built Environment, University of Nottingham, University Park NG7 2RD, UK
2
Department of Architecture, University of Ferrara, Via Quartieri 8, Ferrara 44121, Italy
3
Department of Engineering, University of Ferrara, Via Saragat 1, Ferrara 44122, Italy
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jean-Michel Nunzi
Received: 28 February 2015 / Accepted: 11 May 2015 / Published: 20 May 2015
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Abstract

This study presents a numerical validation of a new approach to model single junction PV cell under non-uniform illumination for low-concentration solar collectors such as compound parabolic concentrators (CPC). The simulation is achieved by finite element modelling (FEM). To characterize the results, the model is simulated with five different non-uniform illumination profiles. The results indicate that increasing the non-uniformity of concentrated light will introduce more resistive losses and lead to a significant attenuation in the PV cell short-circuit current. The FEM modelling results are then used to validate the array modelling approach, in which a single junction PV cell is considered equivalent to a parallel-connected array of several cell splits. A comparison between the FEM and array modelling approaches shows good agreement. Therefore, the array modelling approach is a fast way to investigate the PV cell performance under non-uniform illumination, while the FEM approach is useful in optimizing design of fingers and bus-bars on a PV. View Full-Text
Keywords: single junction PV cell; CPC; non-uniform illumination; finite element modelling (FEM); array modelling single junction PV cell; CPC; non-uniform illumination; finite element modelling (FEM); array modelling
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Zhou, H.; Su, Y.; Bottarelli, M.; Bortoloni, M.; Wu, S. Numerical Validation of a New Approach to Model Single Junction Low Concentration PV Cells under Non-Uniform Illumination. Energies 2015, 8, 4529-4548.

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