Chokri Belhadj Ahmed (Keynote Speaker for PSE)

Bifacial Photovoltaics technology and applications

Bifacial photovoltaic (PV) is a promising solar energy technology that can harvest light from both the front and rear sides to produce more energy yield than monofacial PV modules. The inherent capability to harness albedo radiation improve energy output and minimize the negative of the surrounding effect. Bifacial modules are applied for large PV plants as well as for residential, for building integrated PV applications and can open up new PV application opportunities like in sound barriers or other vertical installations. The East/West vertical mounting of PV systems reaps particular benefits in snow-rich regions (no sticking of snow) or desert locations (reduced or no soiling), and contributes to a more consistent energy production throughout the day “peak-shaving”, thus improving the alignment between electricity production and demand. Recently, a significant endeavor has been made to quantify and predict the energy yield of bifacial PV modules for different installation configuration such stand alone, PV plants, east and west orientation. An obvious way to visualize the benefit due to bifaciality is to analyze the bifacial gain, which is the difference in the energy yield if bifacial, and monofacial devices with similar installation situation were compared. The levelized cost of PV generated electricity (LCOE) comparison between both bifacial and monofacial technologies for the utility large scale, ground-mounted PV systems has concluded that bifacial PV technology has a strong potential to significantly reduce the LCOE of PV generated electricity.