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Experimental study and exergy analysis of photovoltaic-thermoelectric with flat plate micro-channel heat pipe

Shittu, Samson; Li, Guiqiang; Zhao, Xudong; Zhou, Jinzhi; Ma, Xiaoli; Akhlaghi, Yousef Golizadeh


Jinzhi Zhou


Effective cooling of the photovoltaic can enhance electrical conversion efficiency of a photovoltaic system. The combination of photovoltaic and thermoelectric generator provides unique advantages because of their complementary characteristics. In addition, hybrid photovoltaic-thermoelectric can utilize a wider solar spectrum thereby harvesting more energy from the sun. Heat pipes are passive devices that can transfer heat efficiently over a long distance. Therefore, this study presents an experimental investigation and exergy analysis of a photovoltaic-thermoelectric with flat plate micro-channel heat pipe. The experiment is performed in a laboratory using a solar simulator and water-cooling is used for the thermoelectric generator. The effect of thermoelectric load resistance, micro-channel heat pipe back insulation and solar radiation on the performance of the hybrid system is presented and a comparison with a photovoltaic only system is provided. Results show that the hybrid system provides an enhanced performance compared to the photovoltaic only system and absence of insulation behind the micro-channel heat pipe enhances electrical performance of the hybrid system. Furthermore, results show the feasibility of the hybrid system for generating electricity and small hot water. This study will provide valuable guidance for design of photovoltaic-thermoelectric systems with heat pipe and verifies the feasibility of such systems.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Mar 1, 2020
Journal Energy Conversion and Management
Print ISSN 0196-8904
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 207
Article Number 112515
APA6 Citation Shittu, S., Li, G., Zhao, X., Zhou, J., Ma, X., & Akhlaghi, Y. G. (2020). Experimental study and exergy analysis of photovoltaic-thermoelectric with flat plate micro-channel heat pipe. Energy Conversion and Management, 207,
Keywords Fuel Technology; Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment; Energy Engineering and Power Technology; Nuclear Energy and Engineering