Suramya's Blog : Welcome to my crazy life…

July 26, 2023

New Double sided solar panels nearly double the power production per panel

Filed under: Emerging Tech,Science Related — Suramya @ 11:12 PM

Solar Panels have come a long way in the last few decades and their efficiency has been consistently increasing over the time as well. We have gone from an efficiency of ~10% on an average to more than 25% today. Now researchers from US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have created a new double sided solar panel that generates electricity from both sides of the panel. Basically it uses reflected light on the back side of the panel to generate power. Even though the amount of power generated by the backside of the panel is only ~90% of the power generated by the front end adding them both together means that a single panel is generating almost double the power than traditional panels.

Bifacial photovoltaics (PV) harvest solar irradiance from both their front and rear surfaces, boosting energy conversion efficiency to maximize their electrical power production. For single-junction perovskite solar cells (PSCs), the performance of bifacial configurations is still far behind that of their state-of-the-art monofacial counterparts. Here, we report on highly efficient, bifacial, single-junction PSCs based on the p-i-n (or inverted) architecture. We used optical and electrical modeling to design a transparent conducting rear electrode for bifacial PSCs to enable optimized efficiency under a variety of albedo illumination conditions. The bifaciality of the PSCs was about 91%–93%. Under concurrent bifacial measurement conditions, we obtained equivalent, stabilized bifacial power output densities of 26.9, 28.5, and 30.1 mW/cm2 under albedos of 0.2, 0.3, and 0.5, respectively. We further showed that bifacial perovskite PV technology has the potential to outperform its monofacial counterparts with higher energy yields and lower levelized cost of energy (LCOE).

This is a significant breakthrough and the research was published in the journal Joule titled “Highly efficient bifacial single-junction perovskite solar cells”.

I love the fact that renewable energy is getting so much more push nowadays. I have been exploring putting solar at my place, but since I am in an apartment I don’t have much options available that would make financial sense. The panels I could put up would barely supply enough power making the whole thing not cost effective. Parents have put solar at our house in Delhi and my cousin has done the same at their farm where most of their power consumption is managed by their solar setup.

– Suramya

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