CFD | Posted on
August 21st, 2013 by
Solar photovoltaic (PV) cells are semiconductor devices that directly convert solar energy into electricity or voltage using the photovoltaic effect. These PV cells are more commonly known as solar cells, or solar panels, and in 2012 they produced roughly 93 terawatt-hours (TWh) of electricity — enough energy to power over 20 million homes. Because the cells must be directly exposed to the sun’s rays, they are housed outdoors where the panels are affected by the elements. Therefore, the cells must not only be optimized to efficiently produce electricity, but must also be able to survive the conditions of their environment over time. This is especially important when designing solar panels for use in a photovoltaic power station (also known as a solar farm, or solar park, where the panels are erected in open fields with no shelter from the wind. In these solar farms, where there are sometimes hundreds of PV cells, the turbulent flow around the panel and the structural displacement that takes place as a result of this flow load must be modeled and analyzed to ensure an optimized solar panel design.
Read more on: Efficient Solar Panel Design Improves the PV Industry