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Proceedings Paper

10% efficiency solar thermophotovoltaic systems using spectrally controlled monolithic planar absorber/emitters
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Paper Abstract

In solar thermophotovoltaic (STPV) generation systems, the thermal radiation from emitters heated by the high temperature solar absorbers is converted into electricity at a photovoltaic (PV) cell. STPV systems have some advantages over PV generation systems. For instance, it is possible to control the thermal radiation spectrum of the emitter. Generally, the PV cell has an inherent sensitive region where an incident photon excites the electron. Enhancing the thermal radiation in this sensitive region of the PV cell, therefore, increases the generation efficiency. Theoretically, the efficiency of STPV systems can reach up to 85% when Carnot efficiency is considered and up to 45% when a monochromatic radiation releasing emitter is used. However, the experimental STPV system is less efficient than theoretical one as a consequence of the large amount of heat loss from the high-temperature absorber/emitter system. The purpose of this study is to achieve a high-efficiency STPV generation system using a monolithic planar spectrally selective absorber/emitter. The temperature superiority of the monolithic planar absorber/emitter is estimated by using spectral and thermal properties of STPV system components. Using the enitre configuration of the STPV system, a system efficiency of over 10% is estimated in this study.

Paper Details

Date Published: 15 May 2014
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 9140, Photonics for Solar Energy Systems V, 91400P (15 May 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2057315
Show Author Affiliations
Makoto Shimizu, Tohoku Univ. (Japan)
Asaka Kohiyama, Tohoku Univ. (Japan)
Hiroo Yugami, Tohoku Univ. (Japan)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9140:
Photonics for Solar Energy Systems V
Ralf B. Wehrspohn; Andreas Gombert, Editor(s)

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