Topics: Solar cell, Photovoltaics, Photovoltaic module Pages: 14 (4051 words) Published: April 23, 2014

Progress in solar PV technology: Research and achievement
V.V. Tyagia, b, , ,
Nurul A.A. Rahimb,
N.A. Rahimb,
Jeyraj A./L. Selvarajb
a Department of Physics, Manav Rachna College of Engineering, Faridabad 121001, Haryana, India b UM Power Energy Dedicated Advanced Centre (UMPEDAC), Level-4, Wisma R&D, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 59990, Malaysia

The development in solar PV technology is growing very fast in recent years due to technological improvement, cost reductions in materials and government support for renewable energy based electricity production. Photovoltaic is playing an important role to utilize solar energy for electricity production worldwide. At present, the PV market is growing rapidly with worldwide around 23.5 GW in 2010 and also growing at an annual rate of 35–40%, which makes photovoltaic as one of the fastest growing industries. The efficiency of solar cell is one of the important parameter in order to establish this technology in the market. Presently, extensive research work is going for efficiency improvement of solar cells for commercial use. The efficiency of monocrystalline silicon solar cell has showed very good improvement year by year. It starts with only 15% in 1950s and then increase to 17% in 1970s and continuously increase up to 28% nowadays. The growth in solar photovoltaic technologies including worldwide status, materials for solar cells, efficiency, factor affecting the performance of PV module, overview on cost analysis of PV and its environmental impact are reviewed in this paper. Keywords

Solar cells;
PV materials;
Cost analysis;
Environmental impact

1. Introduction
Due to the fast development, demands of comfort, a higher mobility and growing world population, the energy consumption is rising tremendously year by year. In the present scenario, fossil fuels as coal, oil and gas, are playing lead role to meet the energy demand. The environmental pollution is also serious problem today due to the huge use of fossil fuels. To decrease the pollution and save the environment, renewable energy technologies have good potential to meet the global energy demand. It is known that among renewable energy sources, solar energy is most promising and reliable energy sources in most of the countries, government is providing incentive to setup the solar energy based power plants. In order to convert solar energy in energy forms usable for human needs there are several thermodynamic pathways. In general, heat, kinetic energy, electric energy and chemical energy can be provided via solar energy conversion. Photovoltaic (PV) is the direct conversion of radiation into electricity. Photovoltaic systems contain cells that convert sunlight into electricity. Inside each cell there are layers of a semi-conducting material. Light falling on the cell creates an electric field across the layers, causing electricity to flow. The intensity of the light determines the amount of electrical power each cell generates. Research on semiconductors (III–V and II–VI) based solar cells were studied since 1960 and at that time, new technology for polycrystalline Si (pc-Si) and thin-film solar cell have been establish in order to lower the material cost and energy input but increase the production capacity [1]. PV is currently a technically and commercially mature technology able to generate and supply short/mid-term electricity using solar energy. However, the current PV installations are still small and provide only 0.1% of world total electricity generation but through some market report indicated that PV installations are growing at 40% average annual rate [2]. PV technology has reduced its unit costs to roughly one third of where it stood 5 years ago, with continuous technical advance and research for efficiency increase, PV will certainly continue on the fast-growing pace and eventually become an important energy supplier in the world. It is predicted by report on the solar...
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