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Structural Failures in Light-weight Solar Cell Arrays under Thermal Cycling

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1 Author(s)
Stanley, Alan G. ; Lincoln Laboratory Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lexington, Mass. 02173

Several different types of small silicon solar cell arrays mounted on lightweight honeycomb panels and on flexible substrates were subjected to long-term thermal cycling tests between -160 and 600C in dry nitrogen. Other tests included immersion in liquid nitrogen and vibration fatigue tests in excess of one million cycles. The arrays experienced a reduction in output caused by contact failure, fracture in the silicon and cover slide, and disintegration of the honeycomb. Failure modes caused by different cell and interconnect constructions are compared.

Published in:

Aerospace and Electronic Systems, IEEE Transactions on  (Volume:AES-7 ,  Issue: 4 )