The Effect of Irradiance and Temperature on the Performance of Monocrystalline Silicon Solar Module in Kakamega

Ligavo Margdaline Musanga *

Department of Physics, Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, P.O.Box 190, Kakamega, Kenya.

Wafula Henry Barasa

Department of Physics, Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, P.O.Box 190, Kakamega, Kenya.

Mageto Maxwell

Department of Physics, Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology, P.O.Box 190, Kakamega, Kenya.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Abstract

Solar energy can be harnessed as photovoltaic energy or solar thermal. Photovoltaic modules provide safe, reliable, and maintenance-free, without noise and environmentally friendly source of power This paper evaluates the outdoor performance of a monocrystalline silicon module based on irradiance and temperature in Kakamega region. The outdoor performance characterisation of a 20 W mono-crystalline silicon module was investigated under different values of solar irradiance and module surface temperature in Kakamega, Kenya. Short circuit current of the module increased significantly with increasing irradiance while open circuit voltage was least affected. Both fill factor and efficiency showed a similar trend with irradiance, increasing slightly and then reducing. The response variables; fill factor, efficiency, open circuit voltage and maximum power were found to reduce with increase in surface temperature while short circuit current increased slightly. The average efficiency, fill factor, short circuit current and open circuit voltage for the module was found to be 10.11%, 0.65, 0.65A, and 19.78V respectively. Maximum Voltage, maximum current and maximum power were found to be 16.78V, 0.48A and 8.11W respectively. A good knowledge of the power output of a solar module and how it varies with solar irradiance and temperature would give accurate information which is vital in sizing and design of photovoltaic system.

Keywords: Operating parameters, perfomance characterisation, photovoltaic sizing, solar module, renewable energy.


How to Cite

Musanga, Ligavo Margdaline, Wafula Henry Barasa, and Mageto Maxwell. 2018. “The Effect of Irradiance and Temperature on the Performance of Monocrystalline Silicon Solar Module in Kakamega”. Physical Science International Journal 19 (4):1-9. https://doi.org/10.9734/PSIJ/2018/44862.

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