ENHANCEMENT THE EFFICIENCY OF SOLAR PV BY INCREASING RATE OF HEAT TRANSFER
As the future progresses, many companies and industries are striving to achieve a “greener” approach to energy production by using solar energy. Solar panels that use PV cells (semiconductor devices used to convert light into electrical energy) are popular for converting solar power into electricity. One of the problems in using PV cells to extract energy from sunlight is the temperature effect on PV cells. As the solar panel is heated, the conversion efficiency of light to electrical energy is diminished. Because solar panels can be expensive, it is important to be able to extract as much energy as possible. The proposes cooling methods for the panel in order to achieve optimum efficiency. To achieve this, various cooling methods have been proposed. A bare solar panel with no air velocity was used as a base model. This was tested and compared to bare solar panels cooled by heat sinks, in the form of extended surfaces such as plate fins that can be mounted on the back surface of solar panels. Results showed that the heat sinks were only marginally effective; they resulted in a steady-state temperature of only a few degrees less than a solar panel without a heat sink. Due to these results, it is proposed that pump cooling would be far more beneficial. With the correctly sized pump, the temperature can be made to closely match any desired value.