DEE-53117 Solar Power Systems, 5 cr


Suitable for postgraduate studies.


Seppo Valkealahti


Students having taken the course are able to provide a general overview on solar energy resources and on technologies to utilise solar energy in power production. Students will obtain a good general understanding on solar photovoltaic (PV) power production technologies. This will include various semiconducting PV materials, generator topologies, power grid interfacing, system installation and operation etc. Students will also achieve a basic knowledge on concentrating PV and solar thermal power production technologies. In particular, student having taken the course are able to explore solar PV power systems operating in various environmental conditions. Both the built environment of the solar PV system and the climatic conditions will be considered. Solar PV systems will include solar PV power plants within the power range from kW up to GW as well as building integrated PV power plants. Also basics understanding on solar PV power plants as electrical systems and their electrical safety and lightning protection will be obtained. Furthermore, students will be able to explain and argue plausibly on the present status and forthcoming development of solar PV market and its role in power production in the future.


Sisältö Ydinsisältö Täydentävä tietämys Erityistietämys
1. Introduction provides a general overview on solar PV systems and solar radiation as a source of energy and power.     
2. Key properties of solar radiation: What is solar radiation, solar radiation measurements, radiation on the horizontal surfaces and methods to calculate radiation on inclined surfaces.      
3. Conversion principles of solar radiation to electrical power: Photovoltaic (PV) conversion, conversion via Carnot cycle and fundamental limitations of conversion efficiency.      
4. PV conversion technologies: Silicon based PV cells, thin film PV cells, other PV technologies under investigation, PV modules build by using Si etc. as cell material and concentrating PV modules with GaAs cells. Also characteristic behaviour of PV cells and dependence on solar radiation intensity and temperature etc. are considered.      
5. Solar PV power plants: From cell voltages to grid connected voltages, building systems from cells to modules and futher to string, solar generator design and operation, electrical power plant topologies, fixed installations and tracking installation.     
6. Efficiency and losses of PV power plants: Internal losses in PV modules, losses due to external conditions and losses due to shading (shading sources, mismatch losses and losses due to failed maximum power point tracking).     
7. Building integrated power plants including integration of PV modules to building modules and efficiency and losses due to non-ideal installations.     
8. PV power plant safety: General electric safety instructions, personal safety against electrical accidents, basic principles of lightning protection and protection of PV installations against lightning.     
9. Economy of solar PV power: Cost of solar energy, payback time, yield factor, achieving grid parity and it's dependence on power generation mix and on location and solar power cost in the future.      

Ohjeita opiskelijalle osaamisen tasojen saavuttamiseksi

Continuous evaluation of the study material and active participation on lectures and the exercise works will help considerable to achieve the learning outcomes.


Numerical evaluation scale (0-5)


Tyyppi Nimi Tekijä ISBN URL Lisätiedot Tenttimateriaali
Book   Photovoltaics system design and practice   Heinrich Häberlin   978-1-1199-9285-1       Yes   
Lecture slides     Seppo Valkealahti         Yes   


Opintojakso P/S Selite
DEE-53010 Aurinkosähkön perusteet Advisable    


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DEE-53117 Solar Power Systems, 5 cr DEE-53116 Solar Power Systems, 4 cr  

Päivittäjä: Ketola Susanna, 09.03.2018