LECTURE NOTES

ON

SOLAR PHOTVOLTAICS
BY

DR.A.M.SURENDRA KUMAR

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and separation of the charge carriers to a conductive contact that will transmit the electricity (simply put. • • .Solar cell • A solar cell or photovoltaic cell is a device that converts light energy into electrical energy. the device needs to fulfill only two functions: photogeneration of charge carriers (electrons and holes) in a light-absorbing material. such as in remote area power systems. e. Sometimes the term solar cell is reserved for devices intended specifically to capture energy from sunlight. remote radiotelephones and water pumping applications. and the field of research related to solar cells is known as photovoltaics. Earth-orbiting satellites and space probes. They have long been used in situations where electrical power from the grid is unavailable. This conversion is called the photovoltaic effect. consumer systems. Solar cells have many applications. More recently.g. carrying electrons off through a metal contact into a wire or other circuit). handheld calculators or wrist watches. Fundamentally. solar cells are starting to be used in assemblies of solar modules (photovoltaic arrays) connected to the electricity grid through an inverter. often in combination with a net metering arrangement. while the term photovoltaic cell is used when the light source is unspecified.

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A photovoltaic cell is a non mechanical device usually made from silicon alloys. Sunlight is composed of photons. or be absorbed. they may be reflected.PHOTOVOLTAIC ENERGY Photovoltaic energy is the conversion of sunlight into electricity through a photovoltaic (PVs) cell. Only the absorbed photons provide energy to generate electricity. These photons contain various amounts of energy corresponding to the different wavelengths of the solar spectrum. . When enough sunlight (energy) is absorbed by the material (a semiconductor). so the electrons naturally migrate to the surface. When photons strike a photovoltaic cell. or particles of solar energy. pass right through. Special treatment of the material surface during manufacturing makes the front surface of the cell more receptive to free electrons. electrons are dislodged from the material's atoms. commonly called a solar cell.

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one cell only produces 1 or 2 watts. To increase power output. As many modules as needed can be connected to form the array size (power output) needed. travel toward the front surface of the cell. cells are electrically connected into a packaged weather-tight module. When the two surfaces are connected through an external load. whether it is made up of one or several thousand modules. Individual cells can vary in size from about 1 cm (1/2 inch) to about 10 cm (4 inches) across. each carrying a negative charge. which isn't enough power for most applications. However. The term array refers to the entire generating plant. Modules can be further connected to form an array. When many electrons. The photovoltaic cell is the basic building block of a PV system. holes are formed. • .• When the electrons leave their position. the resulting imbalance of charge between the cell's front and back surfaces creates a voltage potential like the negative and positive terminals of a battery. electricity flows.

its performance.S. pvs were used to power U. Beginning in the late 1950s. • The pv cell was discovered in 1954 by Bell Telephone researchers examining the sensitivity of a properly prepared silicon wafer to sunlight. clouds. Climate conditions (e. in turn. The success of PVs in space generated commercial applications for pv technology.• The performance of a photovoltaic array is dependent upon sunlight. The simplest photovoltaic systems power many of the small calculators and wrist watches used everyday. and even provide electricity to our homes.. More complicated systems provide electricity to pump water. fog) have a significant effect on the amount of solar energy received by a PV array and. Most current technology photovoltaic modules are about 10 percent efficient in converting sunlight with further research being conducted to raise this efficiency to 20 percent.g. power communications equipment. space satellites. .

Also. pvs have been used at remote sites to provide electricity. • . When DC from photovoltaic cells is used for commercial applications or sold to electric utilities using the electric grid. Historically. generate direct current (DC) which is generally used for small loads (electronic equipment). like batteries. The modular characteristic of photovoltaic energy allows arrays to be installed quickly and in any size required or allowed. However. so that bulky mechanical generator systems are unnecessary. the environmental impact of a photovoltaic system is minimal. Photovoltaic cells. a market for distributed generation from PVs may be developing with the unbundling of transmission and distribution costs due to electric deregulation.• Photovoltaic conversion is useful for several reasons. it must be converted to alternating current (AC) using inverters. solid state devices that convert DC power to AC. The siting of numerous small-scale generators in electric distribution feeders could improve the economics and reliability of the distribution system. requiring no water for system cooling and generating no by-products. Conversion from sunlight to electricity is direct.

Steckborn. First church in the world with solar power . Switzerland.

2007-.m. the UD-led consortium received approximately $13 million in funding for the initial phases of the DARPA Very High Efficiency Solar Cell (VHESC) program to develop affordable portable solar cell battery chargers . July 23. a consortium led by the University of Delaware has achieved a record-breaking combined solar cell efficiency of 42. In November 2005. • That number is a significant advance from the current record of 40. • 5:14 p.7 percent announced in December and demonstrates an important milestone on the path to the 50 percent efficiency goal set by the Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA).• New Solar Photovoltaic Cell Efficiency Record: 42..8 percent from sunlight at standard terrestrial conditions.8% A consortium of research teams has achieved a new record in photovoltaic cell efficiency.Using a novel technology that adds multiple innovations to a very high-performance crystalline silicon solar cell platform.

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• The following animation illustrates how a solar cell cut from a single crystal of Silicon is able to convert sunlight into electricity. The animation has two phases. They may migrate through the external circuit or short circuit there way across the barrier junction. • DARK PHASE: Initially no charge difference exists between the barrier junction. The excited electrons have two choices of movement. Gallium or Indium to produce holes (the green circles). • LIGHT PHASE: Electrons become excited when light quanta penetrates into the P layer. Arsenic or Antimony to create mobile electrons (the blue dots). If the photoelectric circuit is constructed correctly they will find their way back to the N junction through the external circuit. . When this happens a difference in potential is set up between the two layers. The bottom layer is doped with a P type material such as Aluminum. The N type layer is doped with Phosphorous. However because of the crystalline nature of Silicon electrons unbounded by a stable octet in the N layer have a tendency to migrate across the junction barrier to form a stable octet in the P layer. The dark phase in which no light is necessary and the light phase in which light is necessary.

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Storage system 4. Load Leveler 3. Tracking system .• A PV system consists of • • • • 1. solar cell array 2.

5 kWH of electrical energy on a normal sunny day. pollution and weathering. a suitable system of storage batteries will be required .m of fixed array facing south yields nearly 0.• Solar cells are interconnected in series/parallel combinations to form modules • These modules are hermetically sealed for protection against corrosion. • If it is required to be used during non-sunshine hours. • Solar PV system can produce an output only if sunlight is present. moisture. • A combination of suitable modules constitutes an array • 1 Sq.

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SOLAR ARRAY: Large or small. BATTERY STORAGE : In which the solar generated electric energy may stored. which converts the insolation to useful DC electrical power • 2. BLOCKING DIODE : Which lets the array generated power flow only towards the battery or grid • 3.• 1.INVERTER/ CONVERTER: Converts DC into AC . • 4.

CONCENTRATING ARRAYS . • CLASSIFICATION : • 1. FLAT PLATE ARRAYS: 2. FIXED ARRAY: It is usually oriented east west and tilted up at an angle approximately equal to the latitude of the site. TRACKING ARRAY: It is defined as one which is always kept mechanically perpendicular to the sun ray line so that all times it intercepts the maximum insolation. • Fixed array is mechanically simpler than the tracking array. • 2.SOLAR CELL MODULES(SOLAR PHOTOVOLTAIC ARRAYS) • 1.

45 x 1.45 VOLT at normal temperature.270amp/m2 • EXAMPLE : • EXPOSED AREA OF A CELL : 40 x 10-4SQ. IN FULL SUNLIGHT.SOLAR CELL CONNECTING ARRANGEMENTS: • 1.08 amp ELECTRIC POWER OUTPUT .0. STACKED IN SERIES TO ACHIEVE THE DESIRED VOLTAGE • OPTIMUM OPERATING VOLTAGE IS 0. CONNECT IN PARREL TO ACHIEVE DESIRED CURRENT • 2.1. • CURRENT IN FULL SUNLIGHT --.08 = 0. • .m CURRENT WOULD BE --.49 WATTS.

OF SOLAR CELLS IN SERIES • 1. CURRENT IS UNCHANGED • EXAMPLE : 1. FOR 110VOLTS . TO INCREASE CURRENT OUTPUT. THE VOLTAGE IS INCREASED • 2. LESS EFFECT ON • 2. 244 CELLS WOULD BE CONNECTED IN PARREL .45 = 244 CELLS IN SERIES • 2. CURRENT AND POWER ARE DECREASED(INCREASED) PROPORTIONATELY • BY COMBINING A NO.• A DECREASE (OR INCREASE) IN THE SOLAR RADIATION HAS VOLTAGE • 1. WOULD REQUIRE 110/0.

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APPLICATION OF SOLAR PHOTO VOLTAIC CELL .

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