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Title: Outdoor PV module performance under fluctuating irradiance conditions in tropical climates
Authors: Ye, J.-Y.
Ding, K.
Reindl, T.
Aberle, A.G. 
Keywords: Fluctuating irradiance
PV module
Silicon wafer solar cells
Thin film solar cells
Tropical regions
Issue Date: 2013
Citation: Ye, J.-Y., Ding, K., Reindl, T., Aberle, A.G. (2013). Outdoor PV module performance under fluctuating irradiance conditions in tropical climates. Energy Procedia 33 : 238-247. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Tropical climates (such as in Singapore) are characterised by fast-changing irradiance conditions due to high variations in cloud coverage. Different photovoltaic (PV) technologies possibly react differently to these variations of irradiance conditions, which in turn will also influence the module performance. In this study, a novel method is introduced to systematically investigate the fluctuating irradiance and its influence on module performance. Taking the Adnot clear-sky irradiance model as reference, the fluctuating irradiance is separated into high and low irradiance levels using the Typical Meteorological Day (TMD) irradiance values of 2011. These two irradiance groups are then analysed individually for the impact of the fluctuation frequency (defined via the number of minutes of constant irradiance) on the following module parameters: short-circuit current, module temperature and efficiency. The distribution of fluctuating irradiance over a whole year in Singapore and its impact on 5 different module technologies (monocrystalline Si, hetero-junction Si wafer, a-Si single junction, a-Si double junction and micromorph Si) are presented. The results show that the efficiency of wafer-based Si modules is not much influenced by the fast irradiance changes and dominated by the temperature effect at high irradiance. In contrast, Si-based thin-film technologies are stronger impacted by the fluctuations. Amorphous Si technologies show higher efficiencies at low irradiances, while micromorph Si modules react similar to monocrystalline Si at high irradiances, however with a slight drop in efficiency at low irradiances. This study gives valuable insights into the PV module response to varying irradiance. © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.
Source Title: Energy Procedia
ISSN: 18766102
DOI: 10.1016/j.egypro.2013.05.064
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