3 years ago

Reliability of commercial triple junction concentrator solar cells under real climatic conditions and its influence on electricity cost

Reliability of commercial triple junction concentrator solar cells under real climatic conditions and its influence on electricity cost
Vincenzo Orlando, Julen Tamayo-Arriola, Manuel Vazquez, Carlos Algora, Olga Alburquerque, Neftali Nuñez
This paper proposes a methodology for assessing the concentrator solar cell reliability in a real application for a given location provided the results from accelerated life tests. We have applied this methodology for the evaluation of warranty times of commercial triple junction solar cells operating inside real concentrator modules in Golden (Colorado, USA), Madrid (Spain) and Tucson (Arizona, USA) for the period 2012–2015. Warranty times in Golden and Madrid, namely, 68 and 31 years, respectively, for the analysed period, indicate the robustness of commercial triple junction solar cells. Nevertheless, the warranty time of 15 years for Tucson suggests the need of improvement in the heat extraction of the solar cell within the concentrator module. Therefore, the influence of the location on the reliability of concentrator solar cells is huge, and it has no sense to supply general reliability values for a given concentrator product. The influence of these warranty times for the three locations on the levelised cost of electricity has been analysed. Cost of €c10–12/kWh can be achieved nowadays, while after 1 GWp cumulative installed power, a dramatic reduction to levels of €c2–3/kWh is achievable. Copyright © 2017 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. This paper proposes a methodology for assessing the concentrator solar cell reliability in a real application for a given location provided results from accelerated life tests. The methodology has been applied to a real application in 3 different locations and years obtaining that the influence of the location on the reliability of concentrator solar cells is very important. This important influence affects also in an important way to Levelised Cost of Electricity that has been also analysed.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/pip.2902

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