|QESST Testbed 2: Advanced Modules and Integration|
|Testbed Leader||Sayfe Kiaei||Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering (ECEE)||ASU|
|Research Faculty||Jennifer Kitchen||ECEE||ASU|
Testbed 2: Advanced Modules and Integration provides a vehicle for: (i) integrating PV cell advances achieved by QESST into functional demonstration modules; and (ii) integrating circuitry into the module itself, and even further onto the cell itself, to provide numerous advantages in performance and in cost. The starting point for integration of PV modules with other system components is power conditioning and communication. Although on-module inverters are available, further integration, particularly for the larger system sizes, has multiple advantages. First, inverters are typically the weak link in the reliability of a PV system, as they have a shorter lifetime and fail prematurely at greater rates than other components in grid-connected systems. Second, it allows maximum power point trackers to be included on each module so that the systems are not only higher performance, but also more robust as it avoids module mismatch losses. Installation and design are further simplified, since a single shaded model will not lower the performance of a module string. Moreover, upgrades or replacements of modules (usually due to mechanical damage) are more feasible, since the module does not need to be matched to the others in the array. Finally, since the voltages can be increased, wiring and related losses may also be reduced.