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Title: Performance and Reliability of Multijunction III-V Modules for Concentrator Dish and Central Receiver Applications

Abstract

Over the last 15 years, Solar Systems have developed a dense array receiver PV technology for 500X concentrator reflective dish applications. This concentrator PV technology has been successfully deployed at six different locations in Australia, counting for more than 1 MWp of installed peak power. A new Multijunction III-V receiver to replace the current silicon Point-Contact solar cells has recently been developed. The new receiver technology is based on high-efficiency (>32%) Concentrator Ultra Triple Junction (CUTJ) solar cells from Spectrolab, resulting in system power and energy performance improvement of more than 50% compared to the silicon cells. The 0.235 m{sup 2} concentrator PV receiver, designed for continuous 500X operation, is composed of 64 dense array modules, and made of series and parallel-connected solar cells, totaling approximately 1,500 cells. The individual dense array modules have been tested under high intensity pulsed light, as well as with concentrated sunlight at the Solar Systems research facility and at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's High Flux Solar Furnace. The efficiency of the dense array modules ranges from 30% to 36% at 500X (50 W/cm{sup 2}, AM1.5D low AOD, 21C). The temperature coefficients for power, voltage and current, as well as the influence of Airmore » Mass on the cell responsivity, were measured. The reliability of the dense array multijunction III-V modules has been studied with accelerated aging tests, such as thermal cycling, damp heat and high-temperature soak, and with real-life high-intensity exposure. The first 33 kWp multijunction III-V receiver was recently installed in a Solar Systems dish and tested in real-life 500X concentrated sunlight conditions. Receiver efficiencies of 30.3% and 29.0% were measured at Standard Operating Conditions and Normal Operating Conditions respectively.« less

Authors:
; ; ; ; ;
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
National Renewable Energy Lab. (NREL), Golden, CO (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE
OSTI Identifier:
943986
DOE Contract Number:
AC36-99-GO10337
Resource Type:
Conference
Resource Relation:
Conference: [Proceedings] 2006 IEEE 4th World Conference on Photovoltaic Energy Conversion (WCPEC-4), 7-12 May 2006, Waikoloa, Hawaii
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 36 MATERIALS SCIENCE; AGING; CENTRAL RECEIVERS; CONCENTRATORS; EFFICIENCY; ENERGY CONVERSION; PEAK LOAD; PERFORMANCE; RELIABILITY; SILICON; SOLAR CELLS; SOLAR FURNACES; SOLAR SYSTEM; TEMPERATURE COEFFICIENT; THERMAL CYCLING; Solar Energy - Thermal

Citation Formats

Verlinden, P. J., Lewandowski, A., Bingham, C., Kinsey, G. S., Sherif, R. A., and Laisch, J. B.. Performance and Reliability of Multijunction III-V Modules for Concentrator Dish and Central Receiver Applications. United States: N. p., 2006. Web. doi:10.1109/WCPEC.2006.279526.
Verlinden, P. J., Lewandowski, A., Bingham, C., Kinsey, G. S., Sherif, R. A., & Laisch, J. B.. Performance and Reliability of Multijunction III-V Modules for Concentrator Dish and Central Receiver Applications. United States. doi:10.1109/WCPEC.2006.279526.
Verlinden, P. J., Lewandowski, A., Bingham, C., Kinsey, G. S., Sherif, R. A., and Laisch, J. B.. Sun . "Performance and Reliability of Multijunction III-V Modules for Concentrator Dish and Central Receiver Applications". United States. doi:10.1109/WCPEC.2006.279526.
@article{osti_943986,
title = {Performance and Reliability of Multijunction III-V Modules for Concentrator Dish and Central Receiver Applications},
author = {Verlinden, P. J. and Lewandowski, A. and Bingham, C. and Kinsey, G. S. and Sherif, R. A. and Laisch, J. B.},
abstractNote = {Over the last 15 years, Solar Systems have developed a dense array receiver PV technology for 500X concentrator reflective dish applications. This concentrator PV technology has been successfully deployed at six different locations in Australia, counting for more than 1 MWp of installed peak power. A new Multijunction III-V receiver to replace the current silicon Point-Contact solar cells has recently been developed. The new receiver technology is based on high-efficiency (>32%) Concentrator Ultra Triple Junction (CUTJ) solar cells from Spectrolab, resulting in system power and energy performance improvement of more than 50% compared to the silicon cells. The 0.235 m{sup 2} concentrator PV receiver, designed for continuous 500X operation, is composed of 64 dense array modules, and made of series and parallel-connected solar cells, totaling approximately 1,500 cells. The individual dense array modules have been tested under high intensity pulsed light, as well as with concentrated sunlight at the Solar Systems research facility and at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's High Flux Solar Furnace. The efficiency of the dense array modules ranges from 30% to 36% at 500X (50 W/cm{sup 2}, AM1.5D low AOD, 21C). The temperature coefficients for power, voltage and current, as well as the influence of Air Mass on the cell responsivity, were measured. The reliability of the dense array multijunction III-V modules has been studied with accelerated aging tests, such as thermal cycling, damp heat and high-temperature soak, and with real-life high-intensity exposure. The first 33 kWp multijunction III-V receiver was recently installed in a Solar Systems dish and tested in real-life 500X concentrated sunlight conditions. Receiver efficiencies of 30.3% and 29.0% were measured at Standard Operating Conditions and Normal Operating Conditions respectively.},
doi = {10.1109/WCPEC.2006.279526},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2006},
month = {Sun Jan 01 00:00:00 EST 2006}
}

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  • Solar cells fabricated from various III-V compounds have recently produced very high laboratory conversion efficiencies approaching 29% for single junction and 35% for multijunction structures under concentrated illumination. However, due to their relatively limited availability, few of these devices have been incorporated into actual concentrator module structures. Details are presented from two development efforts which have incorporated III-V cells into high efficiency prototype concentrator modules: (1) Varian's GaAs module operating at 1000 suns with flat fresnel lenses; and (2) Boeing's tandem GaAs/GaSb module operating at 50 suns with Entech's domed fresnel lenses.
  • In this paper, we look at the question 'how high can solar cell efficiency go?' from both theoretical and experimental perspectives. First-principle efficiency limits are analyzed for some of the main candidates for high-efficiency multijunction terrestrial concentrator cells. Many of these cell designs use lattice-mismatched, or metamorphic semiconductor materials in order to tune subcell band gaps to the solar spectrum. Minority-carrier recombination at dislocations is characterized in GaInAs inverted metamorphic solar cells, with band gap ranging from 1.4 to 0.84 eV, by light I-V, electron-beam-induced current (EBIC), and cathodoluminescence (CL). Metamorphic solar cells with a 3-junction GaInP/ GaInAs/ Ge structuremore » were the first cells to reach over 40% efficiency, with an independently confirmed efficiency of 40.7% (AM1.5D, low-AOD, 240 suns, 25 C). The high efficiency of present III-V multijunction cells now in high-volume production, and still higher efficiencies of next-generation cells, is strongly leveraging for low-cost terrestrial concentrator PV systems.« less
  • By nature, solar energy is diffuse; for most applications it must be collected and transported to be of any value. Energy centralization is the process of energy transport once the concentrating collectors (central receivers, dishes, and troughs) have put the diffuse insolation into a movable form: sensible heat which has been added to a working fluid. This centralization process entails all that must be done to accumulate the power from the receivers and pipe it to, or near, a single end-use location. The purpose of this presentation is: (1) to illuminate the design principles and concerns of generic energy centralizationmore » systems for dishes, troughs, and central receivers and (2) to provide cost and performance baselines for such systems so that overall systems can be developed which are cost effective.« less
  • No abstract prepared.