Understanding and Benchmarking Ground Reflectors for Bifacial Photovoltaic Yield Enhancement

Shweta S. Pal, Frank H.C. van Loenhout, Jelle Westerhof, Rebecca Saive*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)
34 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Bifacial modules combined with optimally positioned ground reflectors (albedo) can boost photovoltaic (PV) yield. Yet, a rigorous understanding and benchmarking of the reflector performance is missing, which leads to errors in power yield and economic estimates, thus hampering PV market penetration. Here, we address this impediment by establishing an experimentally validated reverse ray tracing (RRT) approach, combined with empirically derived parameters. First, we determine the spectro-angular reflection of a wide class of ground reflectors (diffuse, glossy, and specular). These parameters were fed into our RRT software, that simulated the PV yield, which was then experimentally validated with a model PV system. The validated framework enables determining an upper limit to PV yield enhancement and current mismatch within modules exposed to different kinds of reflectors. Our approach helps assessing already-existing natural and exotic reflectors, and inspire novel reflectors for enhanced PV yield and economic benefits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)160-169
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE journal of photovoltaics
Volume14
Issue number1
Early online date4 Oct 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2024

Keywords

  • Albedo
  • bifacial solar
  • Faces
  • Goniometers
  • Mirrors
  • optical modeling
  • Photovoltaic systems
  • Ray tracing
  • reflectors
  • reverse ray tracing
  • Wavelength measurement
  • Yield estimation

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