An international research team has developed a cleaning system for solar panels that combines a vibrating device with the use of hydrophilic curved rungs. The technique is claimed to be able to remove the surface contaminants through the internal flow of vibrating water droplets applied with a pipette onto the module surface and transported, under vibration, to the contaminated parts.
Scientists in Spain have tested various properties of anti-reflective and anti-soiling coatings for PV module glass, aiming to develop a material that offers the best balance of desired material properties at the lowest cost. Over a year of testing, the best coatings were shown to boost module output by around 2%, and the group also made several observations that could influence future developments of coatings for PV module front glass.
A study has estimated the cost of PV project soiling may increase from €3-5 billion last year to €4-7 billion by 2023 due to more extensive deployment in high insolation and soiling-affected regions, such as China and India. The authors of the paper outlined the potential of soiling mitigation technologies while stressing more R&D is needed to reduce costs and for the adoption of such measures on a larger scale.
A project backed by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 program says it has developed a self-cleaning coating for modules which is also anti reflective and weather resistant. The project – SolarSharc – expects to launch the product next year.
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