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International Journal of Photoenergy
Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 308541, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2015/308541
Research Article

Technique for Outdoor Test on Concentrating Photovoltaic Cells

1CNR-INO Istituto Nazionale di Ottica, Largo E. Fermi 6, 50125 Firenze, Italy
2Dipartimento di Ingegneria Industriale, Università di Firenze, Via di S. Marta 3, 50139 Firenze, Italy

Received 2 September 2015; Accepted 4 October 2015

Academic Editor: Xudong Zhao

Copyright © 2015 Paola Sansoni et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Outdoor experimentation of solar cells is essential to maximize their performance and to assess utilization requirements and limits. More generally tests with direct exposure to the sun are useful to understand the behavior of components and new materials for solar applications in real working conditions. Insolation and ambient factors are uncontrollable but can be monitored to know the environmental situation of the solar exposure experiment. A parallel characterization of the photocells can be performed in laboratory under controllable and reproducible conditions. A methodology to execute solar exposure tests is proposed and practically applied on photovoltaic cells for a solar cogeneration system. The cells are measured with concentrated solar light obtained utilizing a large Fresnel lens mounted on a sun tracker. Outdoor measurements monitor the effects of the exposure of two multijunction photovoltaic cells to focused sunlight. The main result is the continuous acquisition of the - (voltage-current) curve for the cells in different conditions of solar concentration and temperature of exercise to assess their behavior. The research investigates electrical power extracted, efficiency, temperatures reached, and possible damages of the photovoltaic cell.