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Title:Optimization of luminescent solar concentrators
Author(s):Ismail, Nishana
Advisor(s):Johnson, Harley T.
Department / Program:Mechanical Sci & Engineering
Discipline:Mechanical Engineering
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Luminescent solar concentrators
solar concentrators
Abstract:The growing demands on energy have brought forth the necessity of improving the efficiencies of renewable energy harvesting. Solar industry is one of the main sectors in which cutting edge research is done to facilitate this improvement. Luminescent Solar Concentrators (LSCs) are part of this effort. They are used to improve the incident light influx into the solar cell with the help of a polymer matrix with luminescent dye molecules. These systems offer an opportunity for increased power generation without the use of complex and expensive components. Therefore, for enabling effective widespread use of solar power, a method for designing optimal LSCs is required such that the advantages of concentrators can be utilized and the energy losses are minimized. In this work, a methodology for the analysis and optimization of LSC designs is given. This procedure begins with the computational modeling of LSC system based on Diffusion Approximation (DA). Then, the physics model is subjected to an optimization algorithm based on Globally Convergent Method of Moving Asymptotes (GCMMA). For this optimization, the objective function is the integrated flux on the solar cell and the design variable is the absorption coefficient of the dye which in turn gives the spatial dye distribution in the polymer matrix. The proposed method gives a computationally inexpensive but robust optimization for the LSC designs. The proposed method is applied to various test cases to understand and design effective LSCs. The test cases consist of models with varying number of dimensions, constraints,absorption–emission cycles, and cell placements. With the results obtained, qualitative trends regarding spatial dye distribution in LSC systems and the corresponding improvements in performance were studied.
Issue Date:2013-05-24
Rights Information:Copyright 2013 Nishana Ismail
Date Available in IDEALS:2013-05-24
Date Deposited:2013-05

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