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Investigate the impact of environmental and operating conditions of infrared (IR) imaging on infrared thermography of PV modules to identify defects

Rahaman, S.A., Urmee, T. and Parlevliet, D.A. (2022) Investigate the impact of environmental and operating conditions of infrared (IR) imaging on infrared thermography of PV modules to identify defects. Solar Energy, 245 . pp. 231-253.

Link to Published Version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.solener.2022.09.003
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Abstract

The world’s energy systems are transforming rapidly and switching from fossil fuels to renewables to address the current emission reduction targets. With the decrease in the cost of solar PV module globally by about 55% since 2013, the uptake of solar PV has increased dramatically. As these modules are exposed to ambient conditions in the field, they can develop defects or faults. These defects can affect the output power of the PV module and overall system output. To mitigate this, early and easy detection of defects is considered critical for operation and maintenance. Some defects can be easily identified through the infrared (IR) imaging and the presence of hot-spots on the PV module. This study highlights the best operational and environmental conditions for conducting IR imaging of PV module to detect defects. This study reveals that hot-spots with a minor temperature difference of 1.3–1.4 °C compared to the adjacent healthy cells likely indicate the presence of internal defects such as shunt. These hot-spots only appeared at lower irradiance conditions irrespective of the cloud condition. The IR imaging on partially and cloudy days showed that the presence of intermittent clouds, high ambient temperature and low wind speed helps the detection of these internal defects in the PV module.

Item Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation(s): Engineering and Energy
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Copyright: © 2022 International Solar Energy Society.
URI: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/66204
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