The project is to undertake a technology assessment of current and future solar to electricity energy conversion technologies including photovoltaic and solar thermal. This will include the preparation of a report detailing all commercially available technology options including principles of operation, current state of commercial systems, key areas of development, typical commercial system configurations, specifications of commercially available systems, and list of suppliers and costs of systems and options. The report will also include a detailed technical assessment of options, including relevant mathematical models for each technology detailing the conversion process from incident solar spectral radiation to useful electrical output. A tool will be implemented based on the mathematical models detailed in the report. This tool will be implemented in MATLAB and will be within a consistent framework to facilitate comparison of technical performance between technologies. The tool will be formulated to reflect the physical structure of the technologies and allow variation of all key parameters. The toll will also provide flexible sensitivity analysis of key parameters of each technology (especially those likely to be influenced by future technology developments) with regards conversion efficiency and power density. The models must account for practical implementation considerations likely to arise in European, North American and Asian markets. The tool must bevalidated against real performance data available from literature. The MATLAB code will be fully compatible with SCILAB and will include comprehensive comments and a man file will be included to guide users.
The report and models will be used to inform R&D investment decisions and to track and evaluate R&D outcomes. The report will not be more than 10 pages (excluding annexes).