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Performance of Bifacial Photovoltaic Modules on a Dual-Axis Tracker in a High-Latitude, High-Albedo Environment
|By Michigan Tech's Open Sustainability Technology Lab.
Wanted: Students to make a distributed future with solar-powered open-source 3-D printing.
Pearce Publications: Energy Conservation • Energy Policy • Industrial Symbiosis • Life Cycle Analysis • Materials Science • Open Source • Photovoltaic Systems • Solar Cells • Sustainable Development • Sustainability Education
- Laurie Burnham, Daniel Riley, Bevan Walker and Joshua M. Pearce. Performance of Bifacial Photovoltaic Modules on a Dual-Axis Tracker in a High-Latitude, High-Albedo Environment, 2019 IEEE 46th Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC), Chicago, IL, USA, 2019, pp. 1320-1327. open access
Bifacial photovoltaic dual-axis tracker systems have the potential to out-perform other module/mounting configurations at high latitudes, where the reflectivity of snow in winter boosts bifacial performance and the low solar angle-of-incidence favors dual-axis tracking. Two years of empirical data from dual-axis experimental systems in Vermont support this assertion, demonstrating that bifacial modules on a dual-axis tracker produced 14 percent more electricity in a year than their monofacial counterparts and as much as 40 percent during the peak winter months. These bifacial gains are in addition to the estimated 35-40 percent energy gains of a dual-axis tracker relative to a fixed-tilt system. Such findings suggest that bifacial two-axis tracker systems could be economically attractive in northern latitudes, with high-efficiency modules compensating for the trackers' installation and maintenance costs, and future design improvements enabling further performance gains.
- Details on PV performance monitoring by R. Andrews. PV Performance Modeling: Assessing Variability, Uncertainty and Sensitivity. Solar Professional Issue 8.5, Sep/Oct 2015.
- "The 10 Snowiest Places on the Planet" by the Mother Nature Network.
- Differences in Snow Shedding in Photovoltaic Systems with Framed and Frameless Modules
- Impact of Snow and Ground Interference on Photovoltaic Electric System Performance
- Effects of snow on photovoltaic performance
- Open Solar Outdoors Test Field
- Outdoor data acquisition
- Queen's Innovation Park Test Site
- Solar resource measurement for PV applications
- Prediction of energy effects on photovoltaic systems due to snowfall events
- A new method to determine the effects of hydrodynamic surface coatings on the snow shedding effectiveness of solar photovoltaic modules