Solar Hybrid Photovoltaic / Thermal (PVT) Technology, Cool Down To Heat

Dual Sun Hybrid Solar Panels

The global energy demand is rapidly increasing and the necessity of adding more energy generation capacities from renewable energy sources are also increasing (as a new capacity or replacing the old sources). Solar energy is one of the main reliable sources of renewable energy, which has the potential to replace all the current conventional fossil fuels that are leading to climate change threat. The solar energy solution has now become economically viable in most of the regions in the world.

One of the main challenges in solar energy field is module efficiency. Therefore there are different possibilities being explored in solar energy R&D environments to increase the efficiency [1]. The current renewable electricity and heating demands are being covered by implementing solar photovoltaic and solar thermal technologies separately which requires huge space. This is a big challenge to install solar systems in residential and commercial sectors where there is less space and high demand, eventually it can also be an obstacle for solar decentralization.

On the other hand, current commercial solar PV modules are utilizing less than 20% of sunlight to generate electricity and remaining 80% solar radiation is getting dumped as heat. Solar photovoltaic/thermal (PVT) technology combines both solar photovoltaics and solar thermal technologies which can increase the overall efficiency whereas the dumped heat can be used for heating loads. There has been a lot of research is being done since 1970. This concept will also increase the solar PV performance by cooling down the solar cells [2]. 

This hybrid technology is divided into three categories.

  • Solar liquid-based PVT
  • Air based PVT
  • Concentrated PVT (c-PVT)

These could be utilized for different types of applications such as single-family houses, dwellings, industry processes, district heating and different commercial purposes etc. Liquid based PVT can be used for generating hot water demand, air-based PVT can be used for space heating or ventilation applications for low temperature utilization systems whereas concentrated PVT (c-PVT) is being used for high temperature desired applications.

Hybrid Solar Panel, Bird Eye Energy

The research in solar PVT technology is being done at a rapid pace as there is huge scope for technical developments in this technology [3]. International Energy Agency (IEA) has a current research task on solar PVT collectors which aims to assess the current status of this technology and improve technological developments of solar PVT collectors and systems. This task is also expected to bring awareness about this technology [4].

Bird Eye Technology, System Setup

Refrences

[1] Y. Jia, G. Alva, and G. Fang, ‘Development and applications of photovoltaic–thermal systems: A review’, Renew. Sustain. Energy Rev., vol. 102, pp. 249–265, Mar. 2019, doi: 10.1016/j.rser.2018.12.030.
[2] A. H. A. Al-Waeli, K. Sopian, H. A. Kazem, and M. T. Chaichan, ‘Photovoltaic/Thermal (PV/T) systems: Status and future prospects’, Renew. Sustain. Energy Rev., vol. 77, pp. 109–130, Sep. 2017, doi: 10.1016/j.rser.2017.03.126.
[3] S. S. Joshi and A. S. Dhoble, ‘Photovoltaic -Thermal systems (PVT): Technology review and future trends’, Renew. Sustain. Energy Rev., vol. 92, pp. 848–882, Sep. 2018, doi: 10.1016/j.rser.2018.04.067.
[4] ‘IEA SHC || Task 60 || IEA SHC || Task 60’. [Online]. Available: task60.iea-shc.org/. [Accessed: 21-Nov-2019].
[5] Dual Sun Hybrid Solar Panels