This study summarizes the performance of a photovoltaic/thermal (PV/T) system integrated with a glass-to-PV backsheet (PVF film-based backsheet) and glass-to-glass photovoltaic (PV) cells protections. A dual-fluid heat exchanger is used to cool the PV cells in which water and air are operated simultaneously. The proposed PV/T design brings about a higher electric output while producing sufficient thermal energy. A detailed numerical study was performed by calculating real-time heat transfer coefficients. Energy balance equations across the dual-fluid PV/T system were solved using an ordinary differential equation (ODE) solver in MATLAB software. The hourly and annual energy and exergy variations for both configurations were evaluated for Cheonan City, Korea. In the case of a PV/T system with a glass-to-glass configuration, a larger heat exchange area causes the extraction of extra solar heat from the PV cells and thus improving the overall efficiency of the energy transfer. Results depict that the annual electrical and total thermal efficiencies with a glass-to-glass configuration were found to be 14.31% and 52.22%, respectively, and with a glass-to-PV backsheet configuration, the aforementioned values reduced to 13.92% and 48.25%, respectively. It is also observed that, with the application of a dual-fluid heat exchanger, the temperature gradient across the PV panel is surprisingly reduced.
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