The expected lifetime of solar photovoltaic modules is over 25 years. During this time, they are exposed to a variety of conditions, including ultraviolet (UV) radiation. Under the influence of climate and weather conditions and UV radiation, backsheet materials of solar module tends to degrade, leading to crack and loss of electrical insulations. This ultimately shortens the lifespan of modules.
In this project, you will investigate the impact of UV radiation on the degradation of the module backsheet by accelerated testing. First, you will fabricate a series of mini modules (a compound of front glass, encapsulant, solar cells and backsheet) using a range of different backsheet materials. These samples will then be exposed to UV in our UV test chamber. The condition of the backsheet degradation is tested at regular intervals using various methods, such as Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR).
In your project, you will:
- Learn about different backsheet materials used in solar modules.
- Learn how to laminate mini modules.
- Operate accelerated UV testing equipment and characterisation equipment.
- Analyse measurement data.
- Desire for hands-on work in the lab.
- You will need to complete Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3 level WHS training (can be organised prior to starting working in the lab).
- Learn about solar modules
- Gain practical experience in a research environment
- Learn careful planning of experiments, characterisation and analysis methods