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DIY Photovoltaic Panels

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Posted by Curbie on February 24, 2011, 9:41 pm
 
I was searching the web for some specific information on solar thermal
panels and ran into a site about DIY building Photovoltaic panels. A
few years ago a bought a book:
"BUILD YOUR OWN SOLAR PANEL"
by Phillip J. Hurley
http://www.goodideacreative.com/solarpanel.html
.... which seemed like a real effort to construct DIY Photovoltaic
panels, but I was twitchy on whether the panels could be sealed well
enough against atmosphere infiltration (oxygen & moisture) for near
commercial longevity.

On the DIY Photovoltaic site I found links to these You-Tube videos
outlining another method of DIY Photovoltaic construction:


This method basically uses a frame made from aluminum angle stock with
a sheet of ¼" low iron tempered glass laid in and the tabbed array of
PV cells just set on the bottom side of the glass, then the whole
array is bonded and encapsulated with the glass with Dow product
Sylgard 184.

The tentative costs for this encapsulated method look pretty good and
this and it makes sense for oxygen & moisture infiltration as this
Sylgard 184 is specifially made for this porpose.

Has any here anything about this method, good or bad???

Thank,

Curbie


Posted by Gordon on February 24, 2011, 10:35 pm
 


v=hcR3wMO5Wuc&feature&list=ULSZd9UUt_xU

Apearently the Sylgard is not cheap.  Someone commented that it cost
about $0.00.  But, this method looks more durable than the wood frame
construction that others describe.  I can just imagine how well
a wood frame panne would hold up here in the pacific northwest.

One thing you need to be carefull with when constructing panels
is to watch out for the different thermal coefiecents of expansion
of the various materials.  That is why the wood frame construction
uses a single dab of RTV to bond the solar cells at their center.
The solar cells and the wood backing have different coeficents of
expansion. The center dab bonding allows the cells and the wood
to expand independently.

In the video he mentions not to use plexi glass for the glass for
the same reason.

Posted by Curbie on February 25, 2011, 12:38 am
 As I read it, the Sylgard curing as a jell, is there to buffer the
different thermal coefficients along with encapsulating the calls from
oxygen and moisture, so it seems to me that the notion of protecting
cells from oxygen and moisture is too important to neglect, the cost
is what it is.

I would never even consider a wooden frame (or backed) panel even with
something like Sygard, the insulation value of a wooden frame would
help to retain the heat generated by the cells and I'm having the
local glass guy price out a special order a 1/4" low iron, tempered
glass.

Curbie



Posted by Bruce Gordon on February 25, 2011, 8:33 pm
 

Just a NOTE here, If you had a backplate that was metal with a thermal
conducting, but electrically insulating, bonding to that backplate from
your Cells, then you could put a cooling loop on other side of the
backplate, and make a dual purpose Solar Collector, and use the heat out
of the cooling loop to preheat water, or for other uses, while keeping
your PV Cells cooler, where they generate more efficiently...
Just say'en.....

--
Bruce in Alaska   add path before the @ for email

Posted by Josepi on February 25, 2011, 9:21 pm
 

"Bruce Gordon"  wrote in message
Just a NOTE here, If you had a backplate that was metal with a thermal
conducting, but electrically insulating, bonding to that backplate from
your Cells, then you could put a cooling loop on other side of the
backplate, and make a dual purpose Solar Collector, and use the heat out
of the cooling loop to preheat water, or for other uses, while keeping
your PV Cells cooler, where they generate more efficiently...
Just say'en.....

---------------------------
Wow! What a concept. Too bad four thousand people before haven't done that
before.


mike ( The reel one)


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