Projects / Programmes source: ARIS

Photovoltaic cell and module inhomogenity analysis and performance monitoring in power plants through lifetime

Research activity

Code Science Field Subfield
2.03.03  Engineering sciences and technologies  Energy engineering  Renewable resources and technologies 

Code Science Field
T140  Technological sciences  Energy research 

Code Science Field
2.02  Engineering and Technology  Electrical engineering, Electronic engineering, Information engineering 
photovoltaics, solar cell, photovoltaic module, performance, inhomogeneity
Evaluation (rules)
source: COBISS
Researchers (13)
no. Code Name and surname Research area Role Period No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  30685  PhD Matevž Bokalič  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2018  91 
2.  18180  PhD Kristijan Brecl  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2018  151 
3.  20184  PhD Marko Jankovec  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2018  391 
4.  36460  PhD Marko Jošt  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2017  98 
5.  35416  PhD Blaž Kirn  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2017  16 
6.  30036  Brigita Kmet    Technical associate  2016 - 2018  165 
7.  19221  PhD Janez Krč  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2018  410 
8.  38523  PhD Maja Makarovič Hrvatin  Materials science and technology  Junior researcher  2016 - 2018  82 
9.  04587  PhD Barbara Malič  Electronic components and technologies  Researcher  2016 - 2018  1,475 
10.  03334  PhD Franc Smole  Energy engineering  Researcher  2016 - 2018  372 
11.  12609  PhD Marko Topič  Energy engineering  Head  2016 - 2018  1,081 
12.  26468  PhD Hana Uršič Nemevšek  Electronic components and technologies  Researcher  2016 - 2018  641 
13.  34261  PhD Katarina Vojisavljević  Electronic components and technologies  Researcher  2016 - 2017  86 
Organisations (2)
no. Code Research organisation City Registration number No. of publicationsNo. of publications
1.  0106  Jožef Stefan Institute  Ljubljana  5051606000  89,976 
2.  1538  University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Electrical Engineering  Ljubljana  1626965  27,588 
The research project “Photovoltaic cell and module inhomogeneity analysis and performance monitoring in power plants through lifetime” focuses on determination and characterisation of inhomogeneities in photovoltaic (PV) modules. The goal of the project is to develop a methodology and simulation models of different inhomogeneities, investigate their behaviour during the lifetime of a PV module and predict their influence on the energy yield of the PV system. The research will be carried out on PV modules that are currently used for conversion of solar energy into electricity [1]: · conventional crystalline silicon PV modules (90 % of the market) · different types of thin-film PV modules (10 % of the market) The project consortium comprises two complementary Slovenian research groups: · Laboratory of Photovoltaics and Optoelectronics (UL FE, 1538-030) and · Department of Electronic Ceramics (Jožef Stefan Institute (JSI), 0106-033) The main objectives and expected results of the project are: · Classification of inhomogeneity types, evaluation of their statistical likelihood and temporal dynamics, and impact on energy conversion efficiency. · Development of in-situ monitoring of humidity, temperature and potential for better understanding of the origins and initiators of inhomogeneities. · Detailed spatial, hyperspectral, and structural characterisation to get insights into failure mechanisms and their temporal dynamics. · Evaluation of inhomogeneity impact on the PV system energy yield based on simulations under given environmental conditions, which can be location and installation dependent. The proposed project will improve the understanding of failure mechanisms in PV modules and systems, inhomogeneities in particular. Consequently, a general and more accurate energy yield prediction of PV systems using different PV module technologies and also more effective maintenance will be achieved. Detailed knowledge about inhomogeneity types will reveal their origin which is the first step towards its mitigation and will thus also contribute to manufacturing of improved PV modules.   [1] IEA, Technology roadmap - Solar photovoltaic energy (2014)
Significance for science
The project will generate new scientific and technological knowledge on behavior of PV modules throughout their lifetime. The results will have an impact on solar cell and PV module fabrication, PV system technology, maintenance procedures and monitoring of PV systems. The project will give specific knowledge on inhomogeneities in both c-Si and TF PV modules. We believe that the universal database of all inhomogeneities and the general simulation model for power prediction and energy yield simulations will make a significant knowledge contribution to the PV community. The knowledge of the inhomogeneity behavior will also give a valuable feedback to solar cell/PV module producers. The dissemination activities that will contribute to the development of science and scientific fields can be grouped as: · - Publication of articles in international scientific journals with high impact factors · - Presentations at international scientific conferences · - Invited talks and lectures at workshops, research institutes and conferences
Significance for the country
Photovoltaics (PV) is a technology sector with an annual growth of around 30 %. Despite the industry shift from Europe to Asia some European companies continue to be competitive, in particularly smaller ones. Slovenian companies like Bisol Group d.o.o., MAHLE Letrika d.o.o., ETI Elektroelement d.d., Metrel d.d. also successfully manufacture and have even increased their production capacity in the last years. Two to three years ago, we witnessed a tremendous growth of photovoltaic systems in Slovenia. Numerous SME companies focusing on engineering and PV system planning and installation grew rapidly. Only a few of them are still in operation focusing mostly on PV system maintenance. The results of the proposed project will generate scientific publications in the top PV specialized international journals and straighten the international image of UL FE LPVO, the largest Slovenian photovoltaic research group. The research will open new opportunities for international cooperation between research groups and industry partners within Europe. In Slovenia the project results will directly influence the monitoring and maintenance procedure of PV systems. A better understanding of PV system operation and an easier determination of PV system faults will help to resolve a problem on a PV system more quickly and more effective.
Most important scientific results Interim report, final report
Most important socioeconomically and culturally relevant results Interim report, final report
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