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Fatigue degradation and electric recovery in Silicon solar cells embedded in photovoltaic modules

Paggi, Marco and Berardone, Irene and Infuso, Andrea Fatigue degradation and electric recovery in Silicon solar cells embedded in photovoltaic modules. Scientific Reports, 4. pp. 1-7. ISSN 2045-2322 (2014)

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Cracking in Silicon solar cells is an important factor for the electrical power-loss of photovoltaic modules. Simple geometrical criteria identifying the amount of inactive cell areas depending on the position of cracks with respect to the main electric conductors have been proposed in the literature to predict worst case scenarios. Here we present an experimental study based on the electroluminescence (EL) technique showing that crack propagation in monocrystalline Silicon cells embedded in photovoltaic (PV) modules is a much more complex phenomenon. In spite of the very brittle nature of Silicon, due to the action of the encapsulating polymer and residual thermo-elastic stresses, cracked regions can recover the electric conductivity during mechanical unloading due to crack closure. During cyclic bending, fatigue degradation is reported. This pinpoints the importance of reducing cyclic stresses caused by vibrations due to transportation and use, in order to limit the effect of cracking in Silicon cells.

Item Type: Article
Identification Number: 10.1038/srep04506
Projects: ERC Starting Grant CA2PVM 306622, FIRB Futuro in Ricerca RBFR107AKG
Funders: European Reserarch Council, Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research
Uncontrolled Keywords: Mechanical engineering; Solar cells
Subjects: T Technology > TA Engineering (General). Civil engineering (General)
T Technology > TJ Mechanical engineering and machinery
Research Area: Computer Science and Applications
Depositing User: Prof Marco Paggi
Date Deposited: 31 Mar 2014 08:30
Last Modified: 17 Sep 2014 12:30
URI: http://eprints.imtlucca.it/id/eprint/2187

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