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Light-Generated Effects on Power Switches Used in a Planar PV Power System With Monolithically Embedded Power Converters

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2 Author(s)
Imtiaz, A.M. ; Electr. & Comput. Eng., Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT, USA ; Khan, F.H.

The reliability, efficiency, and controllability of photovoltaic (PV) power systems can be increased by embedding the components of a typical power converter on the same Si substrate of a PV cell. In order to achieve more insight into the macro or surface electronics, a novel fabrication process along with experimental results have been presented in this paper, demonstrating the integration of PV cells and major components needed to build a power converter on the same substrate/wafer. Because of the cell level power conversion, PV panels constructed from these cells are likely to be immune to partial shading and hot-spot effects. Several critical applications such as a portable power station in a battlefield or scientific expedition can greatly benefit from an “all in one” PV system featuring several key attributes such as modularity, high reliability, and quick setup time. In this paper, the effect of light exposure on converter switches embedded on the PV substrate has been analyzed to understand the converter behavior at various illumination conditions. Simulation and experimental results have been provided to support the concept presented in this paper. To the knowledge of the authors, surface or macro electronics have not been implemented to PV power systems yet, and therefore, the effect of light on the surface switches needs to be studied greater depth.

Published in:

Photovoltaics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:3 ,  Issue: 1 )