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Lateral Spectrum Splitting Concentrator PV Modules: Performance, Energy Cost and Pathway to 40+%
X. Wang, A. Barnett
CPV, Lateral Spectrum Splitting, High Module Efficiency, Levelized Cost of Electricity
Advanced Photovoltaics : New Concepts and Ultra-High Efficiency
Subtopic: Terrestrial Concentrator Systems
Event: 26th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition
Session: 1DV.4.43
757 - 761
ISBN: 3-936338-27-2
Paper DOI: 10.4229/26thEUPVSEC2011-1DV.4.43
0,00 EUR
Document(s): paper


Lateral spectrum splitting (LSS) concentrator photovoltaics (CPV) of high module efficiency is presented as an approach to low energy cost PV. This work starts with quantitative analysis of the value of module efficiency in lowering levelized cost of energy (LCOE) for PV systems. It is concluded that module efficiency over 30% is required for CPV to be competitive with flat plate PV in the future. With that recognition, the module efficiency losses for the currently dominant high concentration CPV adopting monolithic triple-junction solar cells are discussed. To avoid or reduce these losses, middle concentration (mid-X) LSS CPV is proposed as a high efficiency approach and a prototype submodule has demonstrated a record efficiency of 36.7%. Further measurements and analyses lead to pathways to over 40% efficiency, which has been partially demonstrated by a variation LSS design that is measured to have 38.5% submodule efficiency. With the demonstrated high performance and the assumption of low-cost III-V solar cells that are being developed by several research programs, LCOE is calculated for a mid-X LSS CPV configuration. By comparing the LCOE across different PV technologies, it is concluded that the mid-X LSS CPV can achieve the lowest PV energy cost.