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Outdoor Performance Tests of a HCPV Prototype

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Outdoor performance of a high concentrating photovoltaic (HCPV) system developed in this work has been investigated. In particular, the effect of three parameters namely wind speed, DNI and ambient temperature on the HCPV performance is explored. The tracking accuracy of the HCPV system is a crucial factor in the energy production related directly to the performance and closely depends on the acceptance angle of the HCPV module and the sun tracking control upon the abovementioned parameters. The acceptance angle of the HCPV module mounted on our HCPV system has been determined to be around 1.2°, deduced by studying the variation of the maximum pointing error from the solar source before the power drop. It is worth to mention that the HCPV system produces more than 94% of the excepted output power for a tracking error less than 1°. The tracking error in the range wind speed 6-8 m/s was found to reach an utmost deviation of 0.12° leading to 1% of power loss. Indeed, the outdoor tests of our HCPV prototype revealed variation of the maximum output power under different atmospheric conditions such as the ambient temperature and the direct normal irradiance (DNI). The maximum efficiency of the HCPV prototype has been determined around 23% according to a large range of DNI 0-850 W/m2. Taking into account the variation of the performance of our HCPV system versus the three parameters, The ASTM E2527 model has been implemented and its four coefficients have been determined to find the best accuracy of relationship between the three atmospheric parameters and maximum output power, simultaneously.
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Concentrator Photovoltaic System; HCPV Performance; Tracking Error; Outdoor Tests; Acceptance Angle; Efficiency

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