- Research institutes Fraunhofer ISE from Germany and NETRA from India have announced a research project that determines the specific requirements needed for the use of Concentrator Photovoltaics (CPV) in India
- The plan is to introduce CPV as a research area in India and then use the technology for power plants
- A focus will be characterizing CPV technology in the context of local climate conditions in India
- The researchers will install 4 commercial CPV systems to make comparative tests
German solar institute Fraunhofer ISE and NETRA, the research facility of the largest Indian public utility NTPC, have announced a cooperative research project that determines the specific requirements needed for the use of Concentrator Photovoltaics (CPV) in India. This “CPV India” project is funded by German development bank KfW and funded by the Federal Ministry for the Environment as part of an international climate protection initiative.
The plan is to introduce CPV as a research area in India and then use the technology for power plants. “First of all, we want to achieve a transfer of knowledge especially in the area of CPV,” says Dr. Gerald Siefer, Team Leader of III-V Cell and Module Characterization at Fraunhofer ISE and head of CPV India.
Seminars are in the planning. “Another focus will be characterizing CPV technology in the context of the local climate conditions in India,” says Siefer. The researchers will install 4 commercial CPV systems to make comparative tests, for example, to determine the effects of soiling on energy performance. On the test field of its Indian partner, ISE will install a tracker, which can be used for measuring either CPV or other types of PV modules, for exemple, to investigate how different CPV modules react to misalignments. In addition to the transfer of CPV know-how to India, the project will also provide the scientists with information on how to improve energy yield models for CPV. Relevant findings will be used for work on CPV standards by IEC TC82 WG7.
“The ‘CPVIndia’ project not only enables bringing CPV technology to India, but also opens up several new avenues for joint collaboration with Fraunhofer ISE in various new areas” says R. K. Srivastava, Executive Director, NETRA, NTPC Limited.
The German Aerospace Center (DLR) is involved in a sister project on the topic of solar thermal power production (CSP). The plan is create synergy effects, with the information gained about the required specifications for using concentrator technologies in India, could benefit both types of power plants – CPV and CSP.