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High Efficiency Solar PV and Thermoelectric Cogeneration

Technology:

Researchers at Purdue University have developed a cogeneration system that generates electricity from both solar energy and heat at a high efficiency up to 51 percent. It first splits the solar spectrum into two wavelength ranges high and low energy photons and then converts the high energy photons directly into electricity using photovoltaic cells capturing the low energy photons as heat using a reflecting selective solar absorber. The heat is then converted to electricity through a thermoelectric generator high-temperature heat exchanger and mechanical engine. The heat exchanger is connected to both thermal storage and the engine which allows for dispatchable generation. The size and operating temperature of the components can be optimized at a system level to increase cost efficiency. Applications: Solar energy industry

Benefits:

1) Highly efficient cogeneration of electricity 2) Capable of dispatchable generation

Date of release: