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Life-cycle assessment of a low-concentration PV module for building south wall integration in China

Li, Guiqiang; Xuan, Qingdong; Pei, Gang; Su, Yuehong; Lu, Yashun; Ji, Jie

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Authors

Guiqiang Li

Qingdong Xuan

Gang Pei

YUEHONG SU YUEHONG.SU@NOTTINGHAM.AC.UK
Professor of Thermal Science and Building Technology

Yashun Lu

Jie Ji



Abstract

Low-concentration PV (CPV, concentrating photovoltaic) technology is a promising concept because it can work with the fixed installation. However, besides the economic consideration, the environmental impacts of the CPV module throughout its life cycle should be addressed as compared with the flat PV technology. Thus, in this paper, a novel high optical performance low-concentration concentrator namely asymmetric compound parabolic concentrator (aCPC) for building south wall integration is proposed. And based on the proposed aCPC-PV module, a life cycle assessment (LCA) has been performed for the low-concentration PV in China to make a scientific comparison with the PV module with the same output level environmentally. Several environmental indicators are calculated for Beijing, Hefei, Lhasa, Lanzhou, Harbin. The primary energy demand, energy payback time and environmental impacts are considered over the entire life cycle of the aCPC-PV module. The results show that the primary energy demand, energy payback time and environmental impacts of the aCPC-PV module are all relatively lower than that of the PV module with the same output. It is confirmed by the LCA study that the aCPC-PV module on behalf of the low-concentration PV technology is still a feasible and effective way for actual engineering because it’s more economic and more environmental friendly than the PV technology although the PV is experiencing continuous decrease in price and increase in efficiency.

Citation

Li, G., Xuan, Q., Pei, G., Su, Y., Lu, Y., & Ji, J. (2018). Life-cycle assessment of a low-concentration PV module for building south wall integration in China. Applied Energy, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.02.005

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Feb 2, 2018
Online Publication Date Feb 20, 2018
Publication Date Apr 1, 2018
Deposit Date Jan 8, 2019
Publicly Available Date Feb 21, 2019
Journal Applied Energy
Print ISSN 0306-2619
Publisher Elsevier
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
DOI https://doi.org/10.1016/j.apenergy.2018.02.005
Public URL https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/1217462
Publisher URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0306261918301247