Subject description - BE1M13ASS

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BE1M13ASS Solar Systems Application
Roles:PZ Extent of teaching:2P+2L
Department:13113 Language of teaching:EN
Guarantors:Benda V. Completion:Z,ZK
Lecturers:Benda V., Holovský J., Pambo A., Sharma R. Credits:5
Tutors:Benda V., Holovský J., Pambo A., Sharma R. Semester:Z

Web page:


Solar energy. Photovoltaic phenomena. Photovoltaic cells and modules and their characteristics. Photovoltaic systems and their applications. Photo-thermal phenomena.Photo-thermal power stations. Significance, economic and environmental aspects of solar energy exploitation.

Study targets:

Students will understand principles and limits of solar energy exploitation. They will learn basic technologies in fabriation solar cells and modules. They will learn system designing, energy yield calculations and economical profitability.


Trends in energy needs of mankind, problems. What is renewable source, compare different types with photovoltaics. What are the spectral properties of the sun as a source. What are the time variation properties and limits of the sun as a source. What is the main limiting factor (of the single-junction) of solar cell efficiency. What determines the generated voltage and the generated current in solar cell. Equivalent circuit of solar cell and diode equation. Absorption coefficient and refractive index and its basic consequences on light propagation. Material requirements and application advantages of thin-film technologies. Fabrication of silicon wafers. Fabrication of standard (Al-BSF) crystalline silicon solar cell. Optical losses and their reduction in standard and advanced crystalline cell technology. Recombination losses and their reduction in standard and advanced crystalline cell technology. Electrical losses (except recombination losses). External Quantum Efficiency, its integral. Examples of mainstream and emerging thin film technologies, perspectives. What are the key glass properties, effect of glass reflection and its reduction. What determines the total power parameters of the module. Effect of shading and its mitigation. Module fabrication components and steps, thin-film solar module interconnection scheme. What are the key properties of lamination materials. Effect of temperature and its partial mitigation, what is NOCT. Building-integrated PV on flat and saddle roofs, special PV modules for building-integrated PV. Examples of off-grid PV applications, reliability vs battery and PV generator sizing. System with battery with / without PWM regulator. Standalone household system and its dimensioning (simplified method). Types of on-grid systems, sizing of PV invertor and string, requirements for cables. Types and topologies of inverters. Detailed wiring of small and medium system. Effect of PV on the grid (quality, voltage, stability). Module orientation, fixed-tilt versus different types of solar tracking. Predictable and unpredictable shadowing effects, cause and their mitigation. Maintenance, lifetime, monitoring, diagnostics using inverters. Potential Induced Degradation, principle, when it happens. Diagnostics: type of failures, their consequences and methods to reveal. I-V measurements: indoor/outdoor, requirements for sun simulator. Photo-/electro-luminescence: principle and type of failures. Thermography: principle and type of failures. Reliability, causes of failures, lifetime. Tests, purpose of tests, insulation test. Levelized Cost of Energy - equation. Effect of efficiency on the cost of elektricity - current costs of 1kWh, 1kWp. Electricity cost breakdown, time evolution in yearly and daily scale. Billing scenarios, types of tariffs. Effect of worldwide solar boom. Energy payback time, carbon footprint, recyclation. Difference between transformation of light into heat and into electric charge. Solar-thermal module pr inciple, loss mechanisms. Solar-thermal efficiency, dependences on temperature and illumination. Improving efficiency of solar-thermal module by vacuum and selectivity. Comparison of heating water by solar thermal and by photovoltaics and electric spiral. Where are the gains of PV concentrators. What are technological and climatic requirements for concentrator PV. Concentration factor, approach to determine its maximum. Efficiency of heat engine, types of concentration solar thermal systems.

Course outlines:

1 Basics knowledge necessary for laboratory tasks   2 Problem of fossil fuels, solar energy form and availability on Earth 3 PV effect, PV cells, basic structure and characteristics 4 Construction and technology of photovoltaic cells 5 Construction and technology of photovoltaic modules 6 Characterization and diagnostic methods in PV 7 Autonomous PV systems 8 Grid-connected PV systems 9 PV system optimization  10 Economical and ecological aspects of PV 11 BIPV, solar thermal, concentration systems 12 Thin-film technologies, new technologies

Exercises outline:

1 Introductional, Occupational safety and health, First aid 2 Spectroscopic properties of materials 3 Spectroscopic properties of light and cells 4 Module testing, effect of serial and parallel resistance 5 Module testing, effect of shading 6 Diagnostics of modules by thermography 7 Diagnostics of modules by electroluminescence 8 Concentrator photovoltaics and solar thermal 9 Computer design of a residential PV systems 10 Experimental analysis of laboratory on-grid PV system 11 Computer simulation of residential PV systems with batteries 12 Experimental analysis of laboratory off-grid PV system 13 Assesment test 14 Assesment test


[1] Gordon, J., et al: Solar Energy - the State of the Art, James & James(Science Publishesrs), London, 2001
[2] A. Luque and Steven Hegedus (editors), Handbook of Photovoltaic Science and Engineering,
2011 John Wiley & Sons
[3] A. Smets, K. Jäger, O. Isablla, R. van Swaaij and M. Zeman, Solar Energy, UIT Cambridge Ltd., Cambridge,2016
[4] T. M. Letcher and V. M. Fthenakis (editors) A Comprehensive Guide to Solar Energy
Systems With Special Focus on Photovoltaic Systems, 2018 Elsevier Inc
[5] Konrad Mertens, Photovoltaics: fundamentals, technology and practice, Wiley 2018, ISBN: 1119401046


Basic knowledge of mathematics, physics and electronics


Solar energy, irradiance, atmospheric mass, photovoltaic phenomena, photon absorption, carrier generation, carrier recombination, PV cells, PN junction, heterojunction, crystalline silicon cells, BSF cells, PERC cells, IBC cells, HJT cells, thin film cells, PV modules, PV module parameters, stand-alone PV systems, on-grid PV systems, energy storage, PV inverters, BOS, PV system operating, PV system maintenance, reference yield, performance ratio, PV module degradation

Subject is included into these academic programs:

Program Branch Role Recommended semester
MEEEM2_2018 Electrical Power Engineering PZ 3
MEEEM1_2018 Electrical Drives PZ 3
MEEEM3_2018 Technological Systems PZ 3

Page updated 15.4.2024 07:51:14, semester: Z/2023-4, Z/2024-5, L/2023-4, Send comments about the content to the Administrators of the Academic Programs Proposal and Realization: I. Halaška (K336), J. Novák (K336)