Wide spectrum solar energy harvesting through an integrated photovoltaic and thermoelectric system

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Authors

  • Yongliang Li
  • Sanjeeva Witharana
  • Hui Cao
  • Mathieu Lasfargues
  • Yun Huang

Colleges, School and Institutes

Abstract

This paper proposes a power system concept that integrates photovoltaic (PV) and thermoelectric (TE) technologies to harvest solar energy from a wide spectral range. By introduction of the ‘spectrum beam splitting’ technique, short wavelength solar radiation is converted directly into electricity in the PV cells, while the long wavelength segment of the spectrum is used to produce moderate to high temperature thermal energy, which then generates electricity in the TE device. To overcome the intermittent nature of solar radiation, the system is also coupled to a thermal energy storage unit. A systematic analysis of the integrated system is carried out, encompassing the system configuration, material properties, thermal management, and energy storage aspects. We have also attempted to optimize the integrated system. The results indicate that the system configuration and optimization are the most important factors for high overall efficiency.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-44
JournalParticuology
Volume15
Early online date1 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2014

Keywords

  • Solar power, Photovoltaic panel, Spectrum beam splitting, Thermoelectric generator, Energy storage