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Predicting moisture-induced degradation of flexible PV modules in the field

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By Kedar Hardikar, Todd Krajewski & Kris Toivola, MiaSolé

A critical failure mechanism for PV modules is the degradation in performance as a result of exposure to temperature and humidity. In the case of flexible PV modules, moisture-induced damage becomes a greater concern, since the moisture resistance of barriers and polymer packaging is expected to be lower than that for conventional glass–glass PV products. The work presented here is aimed at establishing, through the use of accelerated testing, the field lifetime of flexible PV modules with regard to moisture-induced degradation.

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With PV supply and demand finding equilibrium once again, manufacturers are turning their attention to the next big question they must face: what their technology of choice will be for the next round of production expansions they are planning, announcements of which are now coming thick and fast. In this issue of Photovoltaics International we feature an exclusive preview of research undertaken by Finlay Colville, head of our new Solar Intelligence activities. Colville will be publishing a full report on next-generation cell technologies in the new year, ahead of the PVCellTech event we will be hosting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia in March 2016. Together the report and event promise to bring some much-needed focus to the debate around cell technology evolution, which is happening against the backdrop of break-neck growth in the solar industry worldwide.

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