A 1‐axis carousel tracker equipped with four 3‐sun low‐concentration mirror modules has now been under test outdoors at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas (UNLV) for three years. There are three unique features associated with this unit. First, simple linear mirrors are used to reduce the amount of expensive single crystal silicon in order to potentially lower the module cost while potentially maintaining cell efficiencies over 20% and high module efficiency. Simple linear mirrors also allow the use of a single axis tracker. Second, the azimuth carousel tracker is also unique allowing trackers to be used on commercial building rooftops. Third, an experiment is underway comparing aluminum based mirrors with novel 3M Company multilayer polymeric mirrors which are potentially very low cost. Comparing the data from March of 2008 through March of 2011 shows that the aluminum mirror degradation to date is negligible and that the carousel tracker has been operating continuously and reliable. Also, no degradation has been observed for the 3M brand cool mirrors after one year in use.
Aluminium; Electric power production – Equipment and supplies – Testing; Mirrors; Multilayers; Polymers; Silicon; Single crystals; Solar energy; Testing procedures
Materials Science and Engineering | Mechanical Engineering | Oil, Gas, and Energy | Sustainability
Copyright American Institute of Physics. Used with permission.
Huang, H. X.,
Boehm, R. F.
Long Term Outdoor Testing of Low Concentration Solar Modules.
AIP Conference Proceedings, 1407
American Institute of Physics.