Questions tagged [photovoltaics]

Questions about solar applications that make use of the photovoltaic effect, especially solar panel and thin-film technologies.

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27 views

Charging a 2020 M1 Macbook Pro from a low-voltage solar array

I'm working on a small project to mount solar panels to a Macbook case which would allow it to charge/offset battery consumption. I noticed that I was able to power the Macbook on public transport ...
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Would it be conducive and cost effective for a contractor to install solar panels onto their work vehicle?

Peace and blessings to all. I had experience working under my father, a welder, as his assistant when I was younger. He had the typical Chevy Van with two ladders attached on the top. I vividly ...
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28 views

Problem with relationship between shunt resistance and grain boundaries in a solar cell [closed]

Here is the correct answer from another stack website. The higher shunt resistance means that higher the polycrystalline lattice irregularity and many grain boundaries. This means higher current ...
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29 views

Safely Measuring Voltage from Solar Panels in an Experimental Research Field

I'm installing solar panels (not connected to the grid) in units out in a field for research we're doing that looks like this (this is an outdated image, but I can't find the updated one unfortunately)...
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61 views

Can waste heat in specific environments be collected into photons and converted to electricity?

This question is a repeat of another post on the physics board Here and here show the possibility to combine photons of lower energy to higher energy. Thinking of an application, it could be used to ...
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30 views

Are cameras' CCDs just elaborate tiny solar cells?

While watching How It's Made episode on CCDs, this just springed to my mind... I always though of CCDs as of some kind of alien technology. Only now I realized that it's just an array of silica ...
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28 views

explaining ohmic loss and understanding inverter efficiency curve

I'm trying to understand an efficiency curve from PVsyst, using this documentation However, I'm not sure what this sentence means: This production is penalized by an ohmic loss$^1$ of the internal ...
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30 views

Explanation for photovoltaic circuit

My background is in Environmental Science, although I have recently been taught in the basics for energy engineering especially for solar panels. I'm currently using PVsyst to build solar panels on a ...
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29 views

How does this one-contact solar cell work?

I am unable to grasp how this only-rear-contact solar cell works. From what I understand the solar cell produces electricity by making the top and bottom side of solar cell complementing each other (...
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Shadow flicker validation

I am currently trying to validate a shadow flickering algorithm against some data generated by Openwind. The goal of this validation is to have a code that we know that is correct and modify it to ...
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1answer
71 views

How do I properly store lead-acid batteries?

I am working on an off-grid solar project, and I need to store the energy my solar panels produce in batteries. I will use sealed lead acid batteries because they require little maintenance and are ...
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65 views

Any Idea of This China's “Transparent Concrete”?

I am currently make an attempt to make miniaturized version of this China's solar highway on my garage https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zK8FvzI3yDA Just so i can re-evaluate the performance However, I ...
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120 views

Does this PID-like algorithm make any sense for a solar inverter?

The application I want to implement the control of a photovoltaic inverter. The goal would be to keep the consumption of a microgrid (the power absorbed from the grid) to a constant value. Notes: I ...
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19 views

Joining the negative PV wires of 3 solar arrays for 3 MPPT controllers in an inverter?

My Inverter has 3 MPPT inputs. For some design simplifications (Involving ATS), i would like the three arrays to have separate PV+ but join the PV- wires together at a bus-bar and take the Inverter ...
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23 views

What is the best configuration to install Solar Panel? Should I give space between the adjacent panel?

![Solar cell array installation, the adjacent cell has space between them ]2 I would like to install solar panel/cell in my flat office's roof top. Should not difficult to install. Just to install it ...
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206 views

How do multiple enphase microinverters stay synced to the grid?

In a prior question it was established that any string or microinverter that is grid tied must put out sinusodial power. But there is also the task of being in sync with the grid. It seems from ...
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39 views

How do I physically protect solar panels from snapping when dropped?

I am creating a system that I drop from 20m to the ground and I want it to be solar powered. Weight is an issue so I am trying to minimise it as much as I can. How can I ensure that the solar panels ...
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74 views

Is it economical to use solar energy to manufacture solar panels?

Estimates of area needed to be covered by solar panels to power all of the US using only solar are about equal to a 100 mile by 100 mile tract of land. But solar panels have a lifespan of only a few ...
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54 views

What's the name of this parameter?

$ P_m=P_n*{G\frac1{G_{STC}}}*[1-\gamma*(T_c-25)]$ This equation is applied on sollar cells. $ P_m$ is the mean power produced in 15 minutes, $P_n$ is the nominal power [W], G is the insolation [W/m2]...
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33 views

What is the definition of Building integrated photovoltaics?

What is the definition of BIPV? Building integrated photovoltaics emerged as a new way of reducing energy consumption. However, the question is how do these systems work?
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95 views

Transferring energy generated by photovoltaic methods

One of the many challenges facing PV power generation is how to store surplus energy for night time demand. My question is this: since the sun is always shining somewhere on the planet, would it be ...
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39 views

What is the purpose of the isolated subpanel terminal of a solar inverter?

In a grid-connected (utility-interactive) battery-based PV system, what is the purpose of the 'Isolated Subpanel' terminal of the inverter? EDIT: Found this descriptive image and hence answered the ...
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55 views

what classes should I take so that I can perform research into finding catalysts to split water into oxygen and hydrogen? [closed]

I am a freshman student and I am very interested in using solar energy to break water into hydrogen and oxygen. So, I want to know which areas are important in this regard..
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69 views

Rotating Multiple Solar Panels with One Motor

I am designing a system to have solar panels track the sun, but only with one axis of rotation that will tilt the panels from east to west. I want to connect the panels together so that one motor ...
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69 views

Resistor to limit maximum voltage of solar panels

I have two 20W solar panels (each Voc = 22.3, Isc = 1.22) in series connected directly to an axial fan driven by an EC motor (rated voltage 48V). Here the maximum operating voltage when very sunny has ...
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88 views

Solar panel actuator control

I'm looking to design a system that can control a solar panel through an electrical actuator for a range of motion of -45 to +45 degrees for maximum solar exposure. The panel will be mounted on a 10 ...
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88 views

Working mechanism of photovoltic cells

In the textbook : Electric Power Principles, in Chapter 1 on the working of a pv cell : The source current Is is the result of absorption of photons in sunlight that cause separation of ...
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35 views

Simulate Dust Layer on PV Cell?

Is it possible to simulate a layer of dust deposited on top of a PV cell in a controlled manner? One potential method I had was to put a given weight of a particulate/powder (chalk powder, talcum ...
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24 views

Is it possible to cook with low power PV systems (under 300 W)

This topic is slightly related to this one, with some extra details. I would like to go off-grid and therefore buy a PV kit. I can see that the prices for PV systems with a power of +3kW are very ...
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1answer
265 views

Design of Compound Elliptical Concentrator and Compound Parabolic Concentrator

What is the process in design a Compound Elliptical Concentrator and Compound Parabolic Concentrator if I wanted to achieve 100% optimal concentration ? Let's assume random numbers of: A light source ...
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4k views

Electrical flowchart in Microsoft Visio : issues

I am trying to recreate in Microsoft Visio a diagram of a photovoltaic power plant that would look like the one below. But I have some issues for doing so, in particular : I don't know how to ...
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764 views

Can solar panels absorb heat for energy?

Solar panels can absorb sunlight and use it for energy, but can they absorb the heat that is generated from their use and use the heat for energy?
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How can I add roof-mounted solar panels to a van without making it unstable at highway speeds?

We have an extended Chevy express with a 24" high-top, on which we intend to install roof-mounted PV. I'm really concerned with how to properly install the panels. We've selected six 100 W Renogy ...
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172 views

Did I wire these solar panels correctly?

recently I bought 3 solar panels rated at 5V 200 mA each. I want to use them to charge a 5V battery bank to charge a phone. Thinking about the proper way to put them, I thought i can connect all in ...
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107 views

How to digitalize a UV image (create an array of the light output at the pixel level)?

I would like to display an image onto a screen using a digital light projector and somehow record the amount of light the screen is receiving from each pixel. I have thought about using a visible ...
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654 views

How to get the maximum power point from I-V curve for Organic Photovoltaics (OPV)?

I am taking organic solar cell course on Coursera, and I have a question about I-V curve for a certain solar cell. The question asks for the solar cell characteristics such $V_{oc}$, $P_{max}$ and $FF$...
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2k views

How can I connect mismatched solar panels in parallel?

I have two solar panels, a Sanyo HIT 240HDE4 (35.5 V and 6.77 A at max power) and a Panasonic (SANYO) HIT VBHN245SJ25 (44.3 V and 5.54 A at max power). These panels are mismatched in both voltage and ...
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1k views

8W Solar panel high amperage low voltage

I have to put together a small solar system for a college project. I have solar cells with an output of 3.65A and 0.6V. Now if I paralel two groups of two cells connected in series I will double the ...
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519 views

Solar powered kettle - how much power for 1/2 litre

I want to create a solar powered kettle but first, I need to know how much power will be required. This means, I think, I'll need to know how much water I want to bring up to a certain temperature. ...
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3k views

Will more electricity be generated by using a lens to focus sunlight onto solar cells?

I have been wondering about this question for quite some time. Assuming an ideal case, the energy from photons hitting solar cells is converted into electric energy as described by the equation: $RI^...
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6k views

How would adding a wind deflector in front of roof-mounted solar panels affect drag on an RV?

I am mounting solar panels on top of a recreational vehicle (RV). To reduce drag, I was planning on building a small ramp in front of the panels to deflect wind before it hits the flat panel and ...
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2answers
914 views

Is the fill factor of a photo-voltaic cell constant?

An important factor in specifying the efficiency of photo-voltaic (PV) cells is called the fill factor (FF). It is defined as the ratio of the maximum power of the cell to the product of the open-...
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What are the technical differences between flexible and rigid solar panels?

During a recent search I discovered the existence of flexible solar panels. Besides the obvious differences of low weight and flexibility what are the high level technical differences between flexible ...
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734 views

Do solar cells age? Why, and how?

As I heard, the life expectancy of photovoltaic cells is normally some decades, as so. This is very long, regarding their high cost, it has significant (negative) effect on the total costs. Why do ...
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Are there different solar panels for recapturing energy from household lighting?

I have been investigating recapturing energy from house lighting using solar panels. Are there solar panels specifically designed to capture indoor lighting with a higher efficiency? If so, what are ...