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Concentrating sunlight on PV-panel.

Discussion in 'Photovoltaics' started by JeroenH, Jul 27, 2003.

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  1. JeroenH

    JeroenH Guest

    If I have a 30Wp panel and I concentrate sunlight onto it using shiny
    panels, what effect would that have on:

    1) The produced power level?
    2) The lifespan of the panel?

    I already know that it needs a tracking mechanism.
  2. Power is generally a function of illumination. Double the light that
    falls on the panel and you double the power. There are other factors,
    of course. One is heat. The higher the panel temperature then the less
    efficient it becomes and the less power it produces for X amount of
    light. Typically, if you increase the illumination you also wind up
    increasing the heat so the light and power levels don't track exactly.
    From what I'm told, heat is what generally does a panel in. If it gets
    too hot then you wind up melting the solder joins and such things in
    the panel. Most panels also use an encapsulant that does not respond
    well to elevated temperatures and will turn brown over time.

    Reports are that you're generally safe at concentration levels up to
    about 2X (two suns, or double the amount of light that normally falls
    on the panel) as long as it's got plenty of air circulation. Anything
    over this and you might want to think about cooling the panels, adding
    some form of over temp protection or just accept that it's life span
    will probably be compromised.

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