13_PV_modules - Photovoltaic Modules ELEG620 Solar Electric...

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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Photovoltaic Modules
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Photovoltaic Modules We have seen previously seen the behaviour and design of solar cells in isolation. In practice they are connected together and packaged as a module to provide specific power output and to protect the solar cells from the elements. We will look in more detail at the following issues - Connection of solar cells and mismatch between - Packaging of modules - Failure modes for modules
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Connecting solar cells • We need to understand how the different connections between solar cells affect performance and most critically what happens when solar cell performance is mismatched • We will look at whether the solar cells are connected in: – Series: give greater voltage – Parallel: gives greater current • Mismatch between solar cells must be taken into account when designing a module, how is this done? • How do we construct a module that will be relatively cheap but also provides good reliable power?
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Connecting Solar Cells • Series connection increases voltage • Parallel connection increases current • This is for identical solar cells, what happens when they are not identical – depends on the connection
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Connecting Solar Cells • What a solar cell does depends on it’s bias condition
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner • Simplest thing to consider is when we have two identical solar cells connected in series • Since the cells are in series, the currents will be matched (not a problem as they are identical), voltages will add. • Useful for when we want a specific voltage, typical voltages for a single solar cell will be < 0.6 V. Solar Cells in Series
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Solar Cells in Series • Recall the I-V characteristic for a solar cell • Realistic I-V curve tells us that a slightly higher current can be obtained when solar cell is reverse biased • This is important when we consider solar cells that are not identical in performance
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ELEG620: Solar Electric Systems University of Delaware, ECE Spring 2009 S. Bremner Solar Cells in Series • Since the voltages add when in series, if the mismatch is in voltage there is no problem • When the mismatch is in current then we have a much bigger problem since in series we want current constant through all of the solar cells • So in series connected solar cells the current for the chain is set by the current of the worst performing cell, this is bad but it gets worse when we have a short circuit condition • We can get a situation where the worst performing solar cell
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13_PV_modules - Photovoltaic Modules ELEG620 Solar Electric...

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