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Title: Methods for In Situ Electroluminescence Imaging of Photovoltaic Modules Under Varying Environmental Conditions

Abstract

Electroluminescence (EL) imaging is a powerful tool used to identify defects in photovoltaic solar cells. Typically, this type of characterization is performed in the dark using a current injection that equals short-circuit current measured at standard test conditions (STC). Restricting imaging to such a temperature range limits the information obtained about the module and cells. However, it is not trivial to develop a tool that would allow for EL imaging to be performed under a wider range of temperatures. Here we demonstrate an in situ EL imaging capability developed within an environmental chamber that allows for control of sample temperatures between –40 and 90 °C. Additionally, we demonstrate EL imaging of 4-cell mini-modules (MiMo) under front-side mechanical loading. A Raspberry Pi-connected camera with short-pass filter removed is used for EL imaging. The camera is low-cost with a small form-factor, appropriate for use in a harsh, enclosed environment. The camera is installed within a thermally isolating housing mounted within the environmental chamber. Three example cases are given for MiMos that exhibit various forms of degradation including solder fatigue and cell cracking. It is shown that by measuring at conditions above and below STC, different behaviors may be identified. In some cases,more » restricting characterization to STC may lead to a failure to detect damage existing in the sample.« less

Authors:
ORCiD logo [1]; ORCiD logo [1];  [2];  [1]; ORCiD logo [2]; ORCiD logo [1]
  1. National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
  2. Technical Univ. of Denmark, Roskilde (Denmark)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
1665871
Report Number(s):
NREL-JA-5K00-76361
Journal ID: ISSN 2156-3381; MainId:7091;UUID:f20f6bcf-5465-ea11-9c31-ac162d87dfe5;MainAdminID:18548
Grant/Contract Number:  
AC36-08GO28308
Resource Type:
Journal Article: Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 10; Journal Issue: 5; Journal ID: ISSN 2156-3381
Publisher:
IEEE
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; combined-accelerated stress testing; DuraMAT; electroluminescence; module characterization

Citation Formats

Owen-Bellini, Michael, Sulas-Kern, Dana B., Perrin, Greg, North, Hannah, Spataru, Sergiu, and Hacke, Peter. Methods for In Situ Electroluminescence Imaging of Photovoltaic Modules Under Varying Environmental Conditions. United States: N. p., 2020. Web. doi:10.1109/jphotov.2020.3001723.
Owen-Bellini, Michael, Sulas-Kern, Dana B., Perrin, Greg, North, Hannah, Spataru, Sergiu, & Hacke, Peter. Methods for In Situ Electroluminescence Imaging of Photovoltaic Modules Under Varying Environmental Conditions. United States. https://doi.org/10.1109/jphotov.2020.3001723
Owen-Bellini, Michael, Sulas-Kern, Dana B., Perrin, Greg, North, Hannah, Spataru, Sergiu, and Hacke, Peter. 2020. "Methods for In Situ Electroluminescence Imaging of Photovoltaic Modules Under Varying Environmental Conditions". United States. https://doi.org/10.1109/jphotov.2020.3001723. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1665871.
@article{osti_1665871,
title = {Methods for In Situ Electroluminescence Imaging of Photovoltaic Modules Under Varying Environmental Conditions},
author = {Owen-Bellini, Michael and Sulas-Kern, Dana B. and Perrin, Greg and North, Hannah and Spataru, Sergiu and Hacke, Peter},
abstractNote = {Electroluminescence (EL) imaging is a powerful tool used to identify defects in photovoltaic solar cells. Typically, this type of characterization is performed in the dark using a current injection that equals short-circuit current measured at standard test conditions (STC). Restricting imaging to such a temperature range limits the information obtained about the module and cells. However, it is not trivial to develop a tool that would allow for EL imaging to be performed under a wider range of temperatures. Here we demonstrate an in situ EL imaging capability developed within an environmental chamber that allows for control of sample temperatures between –40 and 90 °C. Additionally, we demonstrate EL imaging of 4-cell mini-modules (MiMo) under front-side mechanical loading. A Raspberry Pi-connected camera with short-pass filter removed is used for EL imaging. The camera is low-cost with a small form-factor, appropriate for use in a harsh, enclosed environment. The camera is installed within a thermally isolating housing mounted within the environmental chamber. Three example cases are given for MiMos that exhibit various forms of degradation including solder fatigue and cell cracking. It is shown that by measuring at conditions above and below STC, different behaviors may be identified. In some cases, restricting characterization to STC may lead to a failure to detect damage existing in the sample.},
doi = {10.1109/jphotov.2020.3001723},
url = {https://www.osti.gov/biblio/1665871}, journal = {IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics},
issn = {2156-3381},
number = 5,
volume = 10,
place = {United States},
year = {2020},
month = {6}
}