Preprint Article Version 1 This version is not peer-reviewed

Suitability of the Electrical Coupling in Solar Cell Thermoelectric Hybridization

Version 1 : Received: 8 August 2018 / Approved: 8 August 2018 / Online: 8 August 2018 (15:35:07 CEST)

How to cite: Lorenzi, B.; Acciarri, M.; Narducci, D. Suitability of the Electrical Coupling in Solar Cell Thermoelectric Hybridization. Preprints 2018, 2018080173 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201808.0173.v1). Lorenzi, B.; Acciarri, M.; Narducci, D. Suitability of the Electrical Coupling in Solar Cell Thermoelectric Hybridization. Preprints 2018, 2018080173 (doi: 10.20944/preprints201808.0173.v1).

Abstract

It is well known that the major constrain to the efficiency of photovoltaic (PV) devices comes from the generation of unused heat. In this context, thermoelectric generators have been proposed as a viable heat recovery solution, leading to an increase of the overall efficiency. Within this kind of hybrid solutions, the PV and TEG parts can be either electrically separated or connected in the same circuit. In the second case, the presence of the TEG in series to the PV cell can lead to electrical losses. In this work we analyze the effect of various parameters on the output power of electrically hybridized HTEPV systems by means of both electrical measurements and simulations. The results reveal that while electrical lossless condition exists (as also reported in previous work) it not always corresponds to significant power gains respect with the sole PV case. In addition, the strong temperature sensitivity of the lossless condition makes the electrical hybridization hardly practically implementable. This sensitivity in the framework of an actual application scenario, where the solar radiation is variable over time, would make the system working often in a suboptimal regime. The present study gives a new understanding on the actual applicability of electrically hybridized HTEPV devices.

Subject Areas

photovoltaics, thermoelectrics, electrical hybridization

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