An Innovative Energy Absorber to Improve the Performance and the Efficiency of Photovoltaic (PV) Panels

High ambient temperatures have negative impacts on the performance and efficiency of PV cells for electricity generation. For example, in a solar power plant with a capacity of 1 MW per day, the production is at least 10% less in August in a tropical region. High (rising) ambient temperatures have other negative effects on PV panels as listed below:

  • Severe decrease in panel efficiency at temperatures above 40°C (approximately 1% decrease in panel efficiency per degree);
  • Reduction in the lifespan and longevity of photovoltaic cells, which reduces the life of the solar power plant;
  • Impossibility to replace the damaged cell due to heat and the high cost of complete panel replacement;
  • Reduction in the production of solar power plants prolongs the return on investment in these projects.

Nowadays, some fluids such as water, phase change materials, nanofluids, etc. are used to cool solar panels. However, due to the high cost of these materials, as well as the high cost of maintenance, the application of the systems using these fluids is not of great interest to manufacturers and stakeholders. 

To this end, CAESL has developed an innovative thermal absorber heat exchanger that can significantly improve the performance and efficiency of PV panels. This thermal absorber heat exchanger can easily be installed into the space behind any standard solar panels by a DIY person. The patent-protected innovation is equipped with a smart controller system with a powerful optimization engine that smartly controls the performance of the heat exchanger. 

Benefits:

  • Higher electricity production;
  • Improves the effective lifespan of solar panels;
  • Improves the return on investment of solar panels;
  • Does not use expensive fluids;
  • Do not need any changes in the geometry of the panel: in this absorber system, there will be no need to change the structure of the PV panel, while the use of other systems (in comparison) will change the structure of both the panel itself and the supporting bases;
  • Does not need high maintenance compared to other cooling systems;
  • Supports the net zero concepts and does not produce carbon dioxide as such;
  • Is resilient to climate/weather change.

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