Check Design a basic photovoltaic system to meet a specific energy need at a specific location. Check Describe financial models and trends in the photovoltaic energy field. Chevron Left. Syllabus - What you will learn from this course. Video 10 videos. Welcome to Solar Energy Basics 2m. Primary energy sources 3m. Transformation of Energy 3m. Solar energy 4m. Photovoltaic cells and modules 3m. Silicon-based Photovoltaics 4m.
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Other photovoltaic materials 5m. Calculating Module Conversion Efficiency 9m. Other PV system electrical components 6m. PV System Mechanical Components 3m. Reading 2 readings. Improvements in solar cell efficiency over time 15m. A note on calculations work in the quizzes 5m. Quiz 5 practice exercises. Major sources of energy 10m. Solar cell basics 12m. Electrical and Mechanical Components 8m.
Solar Energy Basics | NREL
Video 6 videos. Calculating Power and Energy 8m. Measuring appliance power and energy 4m. Determining appliance energy usage from web resources 1m. Determining energy usage from an electric bill 4m. Adjusting for location and system losses 8m. Calculating system size 6m.
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Using Web Based Energy Tools 15m. Insolation Maps 15m.
Device offers a new avenue for capitalizing on abundant solar energy
Quiz 4 practice exercises. Video 4 videos. Historical Growth of Photovoltaics 11m. Growth Potential of Photovoltaics 5m. Applications of PV 8m. The current trends in photovoltaics 20m.
Solar Cells and Photovoltaics
Current US data and predictions for the coming decades 20m. Growth of PV 8m. US PV growth 8m. Applications of PV 10m. The growth of photovoltaic markets 30m.
Jobs and stakeholders in PV 10m. PV financial models: Net metering 6m. Pathways to PV Certifications 7m. Reading 1 reading. Certifications for Photovoltaic Installation 30m. Pathways to Certification 10m. Show More. Neal Abrams Associate Professor Chemistry.
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Educating nearly , students in more than 7, degree and certificate programs both on campus and online, SUNY has nearly 3 million alumni around the globe. Chevron Right What is the refund policy? Chevron Right Is financial aid available? The topic of thin-film polycrystalline photovoltaics will be considered in the next section on CdTe solar cells.
Epitaxial growth avoids minority-carrier recombination at grain boundaries, by avoiding their formation, but the cost of the substrates is inherently higher than the glass or ceramic substrates used for thin-film devices. However, defects must also be avoided at the junction and interfaces between layers of different composition and this imposes the constraint that the heterostructures should be lattice matched. This restricts the choice of alloys to those that are either lattice matched, or so that the thickness and mismatch are such that the film is strained.
The design of the cell structure needs to have the wider-bandgap layers further from the substrate last to be grown to allow the longer wavelengths to penetrate to the narrow-bandgap absorber layer. This places further constraints on the design of these epitaxial structures. GaSb is also attractive for thermo-photovoltaics where the solar radiation is converted into heat, which is then absorbed by the narrow-bandgap GaSb device.
The push to achieving further increases in multijunction solar cell efficiency is driving new approaches to increasing the number of cells without being constrained by lattice mismatch. By this way the highly mismatched bottom junction of In 0. GaAs-based solar cells are now dominating the space market to power satellites.
Their efficiency is high and stability is good, but the single-crystal Ge substrates and complex epitaxial layer growth leads to high cost. There may be toxicity issues for the disposal of solar modules if GaAs was used widely for terrestrial applications. The most attractive terrestrial application would be in concentrators where the solar radiation is optically concentrated onto the PV cells, so the collection area can be much greater than the area of expensive PV modules.
This is further complicated by the variations in grain size from the CdS interface up to the back surface, where the junction region displays smaller grains. The best efficiency in the laboratory, which stood for ten years since , was Using these substrates places tighter constraints on deposition and annealing temperatures and alternatives to the CdCl 2 anneal would be attractive, particularly considering the toxic nature of CdCl 2.
An important environmental and resource issue may be the recycling of these materials. The highest efficiency reported for laboratory solar cells back in was This has risen to the current world record in of In common with other thin-film PV technologies, these films can be deposited onto cheap substrates, at relatively low temperature, and the potential for processing in large volumes.
An increase in bandgap will increase the voltage of the cell V oc but decrease the number of absorbed photons, thus decreasing J sc. There are various deposition methods that can be used for the deposition of CIGS and this can lead to low-cost production routes. The early results were obtained by co-evaporation from separate elemental sources. The subsequently deposited junction layer, CdS, can be deposited by either chemical bath deposition, sputtering or CVD. The transparent contact layer, ZnO, is typically deposited by sputtering.
The potential for further price reduction is similar to other thin-film technologies and competitive with crystalline silicon. Concerns about materials cost and abundance of materials has stimulated research into alternative chalcogenide absorber materials to replace CIGS in the longer term.
To achieve the highest conversion efficiencies it has been necessary to alloy with selenium, which reduces the bandgap towards 1. This was achieved through alloying with selenium but it would be advantageous to avoid the less abundance selenium altogether.
Solar Energy Glossary
The best result for selenium-free CZTS is 8. The drive to find cheaper solutions to the conversion of solar energy has taken research down some interesting and unusual avenues. Other approaches have looked at conducting polymers and polymer blends to form photovoltaic junctions. The generic term, excitonic PV, refers to the relatively strong excitonic binding energy of the excited state following photon absorption that binds the electron to the hole.
There is still much work to be done on the perovskite solar cells, one of which is to overcome the moisture sensitivity and long term stability. Some of the research is aimed at replacing Pb as the metal center with Sn, which removes any toxicity issues. This chapter has introduced some basic concepts about photovoltaic solar cells and examples of some of the more common materials being used for solar-cell production. Recent developments with crystalline silicon, III-V heterojunctions, thin-film PV and exciton solar cells have been summarized.
These examples show the diversity of materials that can be used for solar PV conversion and different stages of maturity. The largest and most mature production facilities are based on crystalline or multicrystalline silicon. These modules are also the most efficient for single-junction cells. The most efficient cells are made from multijunction GaAs on Ge substrates and are the most complex and most expensive. Most of the multijunction solar cell production is for the space market but increasingly is showing potential for use with concentrators for terrestrial applications.
This is acceptable for standalone solar power generation but the largest challenge for large-scale terrestrial power generation is to integrate photovoltaic modules into buildings. In reality it would have to be much larger to account for the average power production being much less than the peak production.
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Large-scale implementation will require the modules to be architecturally acceptable, in appearance and size, and probably serve multiple functions such as keeping the rain out and heat in, and so on. The thin-film technologies are inherently cheaper but much of this cost benefit is not realized at present because the efficiencies and production volumes are lower than crystalline silicon.