Solar cells are more efficient with a suitable background, especially in the north

Solar cells are more efficient with a suitable background, especially in the north
Solar cells are more efficient with a suitable background, especially in the north

The advantage of bifacial solar modules is that they can also convert light reflected from behind into electricity. This means that it is possible to obtain a higher yield on the same surface area.

This is particularly useful in the case of an east-west orientation, so that most of the electricity is produced in the morning and evening. However, it also seems promising to install the solar modules on a well-reflecting surface.

This is possible on sandy soils or snow-covered surfaces, for example. Everywhere else, auxiliary means must be used. A study from the University of Ottawa ( ) shows today that the financial investment is not commensurate with the additional production of electricity. And the yield depends on the location.

Simple white films can be used to simulate the conditions that light-colored floors would provide. Electricity production can thus be increased by 4% on average. The gain is lower where solar modules provide higher efficiency anyway.

At the test site in Seattle, a city with very few hours of sunlight, the efficiency of bifacial solar cells increased by 6%. It is therefore worth paying attention to the substrate, especially in poor conditions.

It was also found that the area directly below the systems should be bright, not diagonally behind them, which would make more sense with tilted solar modules. A certain distance must also be respected between the module and the ground.

It can therefore be said that the installation location is also decisive when it comes to the floor. Highly reflective sandy soils, which cover around 4% of the world’s surface area, are therefore ideal for obtaining the best possible yield. The additional reflective layers, on the other hand, could be used in cities where available space is limited – modules installed at an angle on flat white roofs, for example.

Solar systems installed around the world alone could generate several million additional kilowatt hours per year.

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