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Evaluation and Comparison of PV Modules with Different Designs of Partial Cells in Desert and Moderate Climates

: Hanifi, H.; Dassler, D.; Turek, M.; Schneider, Jens


IEEE Journal of Photovoltaics 8 (2018), No.5, pp.1266-1273
ISSN: 2156-3381
ISSN: 2156-3403
Journal Article
Fraunhofer CSP ()
Fraunhofer IMWS ()

Modules with partial cells show better performance compared to full-cell modules due to lower electrical losses and increased optical gains. In this paper, we compare photovoltaic (PV) modules made of full, half, and third cells with tab widths of 0.8 and 1.5 mm under moderate and desert conditions, respectively. Initially, a statistical assessment of indoor characterization results of the modules is presented. The efficiency and fill factor of the modules are evaluated to analyze the electrical and optical losses of the modules. It is shown that the modules with partial cells and narrower tab widths show higher efficiencies and implying cell-to-module power ratios over 100%. The modules are characterized under different intensity levels to assess their performance under various illumination conditions. Based on the measured data, the energy yields in Morocco and Germany representing desert and moderate climates, respectively, are calculated. It is demonstrated that increased energy yield can be achieved by selecting appropriate module design and optimized tab width for each climate. The optimized half-cell modules show a yield gain of 3.77% and 4.51% compared to full-cell modules in moderate and desert climates, respectively. These values rise to 4.72% and 5.68% by moving to third-cell modules, respectively.