The concept of one axis passive tracking together with a soft concentration, obtained by means of reflective surfaces, seems to be very attractive because of the increase in energy output. Passive tracking is performed by a Passive Thermohydraulic Drive (PTD), developed by ZSW, while the soft concentration is based on the V-trough type.
To verify the effectiveness of this new system concept in a Mediterranean site, the following aspects must be investigated:
- accuracy, reliability life time and operating cost of the PTD in a Mediterranean climate;
- the actual solar energy gain related to both the site radiative conditions and the reflective materials;
- the limit of the present day flat plate PV modules, in terms of series resistance and thermal operation behaviour, to turn the radiation gain into electrical energy directly.
A 50 - 70% surplus of electrical energy is expected, by using preset day commercial modules. The validation and the improvement of the computational simulation will permit definition of the PV module optimal thermal characteristics to increase operating efficiency.
It is expected that one axis passive tracking and soft concentration could involve a reduction in the cost per PV kWh. That will constitute a contribution to the diffusion of PVs for stand-alone or grid connected systems, especially for sites well favoured by direct solar radiation.
Funding SchemeCSC - Cost-sharing contracts
80055 Portici Napoli