Design Features of Product-Integrated PV: An Evaluation of Various Factors under Indoor Irradiance Conditions

Georgia Apostolou

    Research output: ThesisPhD Thesis - Research external, graduation external

    187 Downloads (Pure)


    This thesis explores the field of product-integrated photovoltaics (PIPV), a term which is used for all types of products that contain solar cells in one or more of their surfaces, aiming at providing power during the product’s use. Product-integrated photovoltaics (PIPV) began to be widely introduced around 2000, although the use of PV systems in products dates back to the 70s. PIPV includes products such as PV-powered boats, aircrafts, cars, bicycles, camping tents, street lights, recycling bins, decorative lights, PV-powered watches, calculators, PV-powered lamps, sensors, chargers, toys, low-powered kitchen appliances, entertainment appliances or PV-powered art objects. The incorporation of PV systems in products could offer various benefits, such as enhanced functionality of the product as a result of energy autonomy, and independence and freedom of use due to the absence of a connection to the electricity grid, as well as the opportunity to reduce the capacity of batteries in portable products and therefore making them more sustainable. Furthermore, photovoltaic products represent a very reliable solution for the supply of electricity in areas, which lack access to an electricity grid.This thesis is oriented towards the development of scientific and technological knowledge about product-integrated PV (PIPV), as it focuses on the aspects that designers need to take into consideration when designing PV products. This research is interdisciplinary by nature due to its embedding in the field of industrial design engineering, regarding the technological aspects of PV technologies in products and user interaction with PV products. It combines the technical knowledge of PV technologies, indoor irradiance conditions and performance of PV cells and PV products in environments with low irradiance together with the typical behavior of users with these products and the way this behavior influences the performance of the products themselves. Besides being directed towards researchers, results of this study are useful for industrial designers who are developing PV products.
    Original languageEnglish
    QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
    Awarding Institution
    • Delft University of Technology
    • Reinders, Angelina H.M.E., Supervisor
    Award date27 Jun 2016
    Place of PublicationDelft
    Print ISBNs978-94-6186-662-2
    Publication statusPublished - 27 Jun 2016


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