The Possibility of Phase Change Materials (PCM) Usage to Increase Efficiency of the Photovoltaic Modules
Gdansk University of Technology, Faculty of Chemistry, Gdansk 80-233, 11/12, Narutowicza, Poland
a Corresponding author: email@example.com
Solar energy is widely available, free and inexhaustible. Furthermore this source of energy is the most friendly to the environment. For direct conversion of solar energy into useful forms like of electricity and thermal energy, respectively photovoltaic cells and solar collectors are being used. Forecast indicate that the first one solution will soon have a significant part in meeting the global energy demand. Therefore it is highly important to increase their efficiency in the terms of providing better energy conversion conditions. It can be obtain by designing new devices or by modifications of existing ones. This article presents general issues of photovoltaic installations exposed to work in high temperatures and basic concepts about phase change materials (PCMs). The paper presents the possibility of PCM usage to receive heat from the photovoltaic module. Specially designed test stand, consisting of PV module covered with a layer of PCM has been build and tested. Current-voltage characteristics of the cell without PCM material and with a layer of PCM have been presented. Authors also describe the results of the electrical and thermal characteristic of a coupled PV-PCM system.
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