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A Ducted Photovoltaic Façade Unit with Buoyancy Cooling: Part I Experiment

Dept. of Architecture and Building Science, College of Architecture and Planning, King Saud Univerisity, Riyadh 11574, Saudi Arabia
Buildings 2019, 9(4), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings9040088
Received: 28 February 2019 / Revised: 8 April 2019 / Accepted: 12 April 2019 / Published: 18 April 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Coupling of Building Components and Ventilation Systems)
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Abstract

A ducted photovoltaic façade (DPV) unit was studied using experimental prototype and simulated in a full scale computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model. The study comes in two parts; this is Part I, as detailed in the title above, and Part II is titled “A Ducted Photovoltaic Façade Unit with Buoyancy Cooling: Part II CFD Simulation”. The process adopted in the experimental study is replicated in the simulation part. The aim was to optimize the duct width behind the solar cells to allow for a maximum buoyancy-driven cooling for the cells during operation. Duct widths from 5 to 50 cm were tested in a prototype. A duct width of 45 cm had the maximum calculated heat removed from the duct; however, the lowest cell-operating temperature was reported for duct width of 50 cm. It was found that ΔT between ducts’ inlets and outlets range from 5.47 °C to 12.32 °C for duct widths of 5–50 cm, respectively. The ducted system enhanced module efficiency by 12.69% by reducing photovoltaic (PV) temperature by 27 °C from 100 °C to 73 °C. The maximum measured heat recovered from the ducted PV system was 422 W. This is 48.98% from the incident radiation in the test. The total sum of heat recovered and power enhanced by the ducted system was 61.67%. View Full-Text
Keywords: ducted photovoltaic; buoyancy cooling; vertical shafts; energy generation; efficiency of photovoltaic; temperature of photovoltaic; CFD simulations of buoyancy; BIPV ducted photovoltaic; buoyancy cooling; vertical shafts; energy generation; efficiency of photovoltaic; temperature of photovoltaic; CFD simulations of buoyancy; BIPV
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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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Elbakheit, A.R. A Ducted Photovoltaic Façade Unit with Buoyancy Cooling: Part I Experiment. Buildings 2019, 9, 88.

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