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The_Architect
Average Member


USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 14 2013 :  19:49:01  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
ok so after a long hiatus, I finally got a chance to try out working on my solar cell film, to boost power output.

first up was that I picked up a substance that converts UV to visible light photons, as I had what I believed to be a UV blocker already, turned out that after picking up a blacklight (yes I had no black light at all, which is odd because I used to always have them on hand. usually two 4 foot dual lamp fixtures with 4 four foot 40watt tubes in them.) aaaaand I discovered that the second cut sheet of UV blocker I had, was not UV blocker. on this I am not sure what happened, but I know that the initial sheet I had that showed a slight boost, is mia, and this stuff does not show a net gain, but a loss (caused by the reflection of the light off the polished surface no doubt.

so off to get a second sheet of real UV blocker, which this time is a lot thicker, (the original stuff I had good results from was less than a 16th of an inch, probably close to 1/32nd of an inch and the new sheet of lexan (polycarbonate) is 1/8th of an inch)

I rigged up 6 cells this time, and took readings from that,

uncovered with anything at all, and still brand new I got these readings from their position
3.23v 4.8amp

and covered I got these readings
3.21v 4.98amp

two things I am seeing here,

one is that yes there is a slight dip in voltage, and there is a slight increase in amps, but additionally, the lexan robs both all of the UV that from what I have read accounts for more than 10% of the sunlight, so the cells are now getting 90% of the light to them, AND the sheet of lexan is reflecting 4% per side of ALL of the sunlight, so before the UV is pulled we are down to 96% of the light, and then robbing the UV takes us down to 86% then on exit, 4% is refracted off the exit side of the sheet amounting to now around a total of 82%(plus a little since it is 4% of the 86% and not the 100% so is actually not 4% but 3.44% so instead of 82 we should be left with 82.56%) of the total light available for the cells,

going on voltage alone, we see I lost .02v out of 3.23v which is .0646 or 6.5% of the total, so subtracting that from the 100% I am getting 93.5% of the power from 82.56% of the light,

so by subtracting the UV that is extremely harmful from the light before striking the cells, the lifespan is increased and the lost energy is minimal. I am not certain how much damage we are saving the cells from with the UV blocking, both by heat damage (since almost all UV turns into heat instead of electricity) and the high energy of the photons that are shown to be very effective at breaking molecular bonds (in this case breaking the bonds the phosphorus and silicon have and that they need to share electrons to generate electricity) but even if it only halves the damage that means that we can get full life from them with double the sun on the cells (a mirror or sheet covered in polished aluminum foil) getting nearly twice the amount of power from the cell before it dies,

the best cells on the market from my calculations based on energy used to refine and process the materials only give back 1 unit per ever 12 invested if you wait 20 years to get it back ( that means a quarter of a unit per year or as an example it would be like loaning the cells 12 dollars and then getting the loan paid off at 5 cents a year) so even with out diminishing return (cell degradation) we would get only 5 units of that power back in 100 years, so if this added enough life to increase the output with something simple that would not degrade to double that alone we would be at nearly 10 units per 100 years,

of course how much damage it is saving and lengthening the span of the cells remains to be seen, but if it is more in the magnetude of say 6 fold so that we can place up to 6 times the light on a cell with the same decay rate, then in 100 years we would not be getting 5 or 10 units but up to 30 units (with diminishing return at least 20 units) and that still looks a lot better than energy in 12 energy out 5 or 12=>5 as it would be instead 12=>20 that puts us over what it took to manufacture them ( cells normally degrade at .5% a year, so every two years you loose approximately 1 watt so a 100 watt unit would produce 50 watts for year 101.) this boost would mean though that we could get say 200 to 500 watts out of a 100 watt panel safely with out destroying the cells any faster than we already are, and just by adding Lexan or some other polycarbonate substitute to the window over the cells.


the pigment idea it seems a company is doing already as I found out after I had already worked out a way to apply it, (glow fine dust and satin finish clear paint to get the texture to hold onto enough pigment to create the layer thickness that would not hinder the production and still have a layer to generate light from the UV rays)

the company URL is sun-innovations.com I believe. However I do not think they understand why the frequencies of light work with the cells and why others do not, so they are not likely to hit on the next step to my research that will refine the process to generate the power and possibly increase the power output while further protecting the cells from damage :)

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Edited by - The_Architect on May 14 2013 19:54:59

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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 18 2013 :  07:05:53  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
my next step is going to be to work out the degradation levels over time, so I am going to construct two units, identical in most areas with only the protection from UV as I am doing here, and protect them both from heat so I can focus 5 to 10 fold the sunlight on them by coating them to water proof them and then build a case that the front is the UV protection, with some distance between this and the cells so I can pass water through the cavity, to draw heat off the array. I will post some renderings of my idea.

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The_Architect
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USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 18 2013 :  19:39:40  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
images as promised
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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 24 2013 :  18:08:16  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I am working on a slightly different direction on this, as I want to know if one specific frequency of light if everything else is removed, will provide a much higher return per photon on the output, so I am building a polarascope with stuff I am salvaging from an LCD screen, I will have some pics and a video soon of what I am building :)

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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 25 2013 :  04:57:58  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
a simple video that shows what I intend to do with a polariscope to make an adjustable color filter that can change the colors it filters out, to see if there is a sweet spot in the spectrum that a solar cell responds best to, and see if the other colors are possibly hindering the performance the way I found UV to hinder it.



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screaminvern
Junior Member



USA
121 Posts

Posted - May 25 2013 :  09:50:45  Show Profile Send screaminvern a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Last year I was messing around with the idea of what you are doing Architect, but I was only using light gels. Great thread Architect! This will be interesting to see what you discover.

{History does "not" repeat it's self, idiots repeat history.}
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aaron5120
New Member



Costa Rica
13 Posts

Posted - May 25 2013 :  23:20:34  Show Profile Send aaron5120 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The_Architect

a simple video that shows what I intend to do with a polariscope to make an adjustable color filter that can change the colors it filters out, to see if there is a sweet spot in the spectrum that a solar cell responds best to, and see if the other colors are possibly hindering the performance the way I found UV to hinder it.



Hi Arquitect,
Your research is much appreciated. As I understand, the monocrystalline and polycristalline( Amorphous Silicon)photovoltaic cells are not wide spectrum converters. They only respond better to certain light spectrum and reflect without producing electricity the rest of the solar spectrum irradiated unto its surface.
Therefore, some solar manufacturers produce multilayered PV cells that can have wider light spectrum sensitivity in order to boost the conversion efficiency, but these are expensive cells.
Most of the wasted spectrum currently by the conventionl PV panels are from the UV and Infrared ranges, which are invisible to the human eye. If you can exploit the conversion rate of these two spectrum into the PV cell, then we will see a sensational breakthrough in the limit of efficiency of common Silicon PV cells, preferibly those off-the-shelf panels from China.
Anyway, keep on your good work, my friend.
aaron5120

Am Retired, but not out of service!
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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 26 2013 :  04:59:56  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
one aspect as I mentioned was to use europium based super phosphorescent ultra small crystals to convert UV to visible light for the cells to absorb, it is both powerful (high conversion rate and long lasting release of photons long after exposure has stopped so even in cloudy spots the cells would produce a lot more energy than they do now when a cloud moves over, giving out a more consistent power output. not sure what sun-innovations is using but they have taken a stab at making ultra tiny phosphorescent pigment to convert UV and not block the rest of the spectrum, the issue I am seeing is that are they using something that puts out a frequency that the phosphorus is going to respond to efficiently for sharing it's electrons which is where the power is coming from, and each of these parts of an atom responds to a different frequency. based partially on the size of the object and the amount of particles in it (amount of protons and neutrons in a nucleus or electrons in a shell) so energizing each part of an atom requires it's own part of the spectrum, this allows us to charge one part of the atom while ignoring another part (like charging an electron shell to get it to give up an excess electron, or charging a nucleus to get it to expand and extend it's positive charge energy field and attraction to stray electrons or electrons that are in a very high orbit and have a weak pull to their own atoms. for now I am just seeking to make the release of the electron in the phosphorus as easy as possible with out damaging or interacting with any other atom's components at all so that they are not charged in any way that would be counter productive be it breaking bonds with neighbors and degrading, or resisting the free electrons we are releasing in the cell making power flow more difficult. once I have tested this theory, if I am right, I will have that frequency and can sort through the atoms and molecules to find a unit that will block all but that frequency and we should have a paint that can be used (kinda like using the gels you mention but we can apply it where and how we wish) in conjunction with other possible options (like finding the perfect frequency to charge the protons and neutrons in the boron making it more receptive of those freed up electrons we busted loose in the phosphorus :) ) more later :)

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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 26 2013 :  05:00:53  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
oh forgot to include, many thanks for the encouragement :)

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ron_o
Moderator



United Kingdom
1052 Posts

Posted - May 26 2013 :  18:15:06  Show Profile Send ron_o a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Architect

Once again thinking outside the square , i like it !

U.V "blockers" are available that can be incorporated into paints to prevent the U.V breaking down the resin chain molecules. Depending upon concentration and applied film thickness this will work well
If you intend to go for a paint / lacquer / varnish etc then the best type to go for is an aliphatic isocyanate cured polyurethane ( ie 2 pack P.U )

ron
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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 28 2013 :  06:46:07  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
interesting. I using Lexan for now. it offers what I need to make a large polarizer too :) but I will definitely have to look into that, as I hope to run down to just a pigment based to block the other frequencies other than UV if I find that there is one particular one that encourages the electron flow and works better when unhindered. if I find there are more than one frequency that works, then I have another plan to allow both through fully to get what we need,

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ron_o
Moderator



United Kingdom
1052 Posts

Posted - May 28 2013 :  18:11:19  Show Profile Send ron_o a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi Architect

If you can isolate the frequencies i maybe able to advise you on the generic pigment / dyestuff codes that you need.

ron
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The_Architect
Average Member



USA
327 Posts

Posted - May 30 2013 :  12:48:21  Show Profile  Visit The_Architect's Homepage Send The_Architect a Private Message  Reply with Quote
excellent and glad to see the forum is back up and running XD

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