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Characterization of an Electrodynamic Dust Shield Device for PV Panel Soiling Mitigation

[+] Author Affiliations
Bing Guo, Eugene Yu-Ta Chen, Wasim Javed

Texas A&M University at Qatar, Doha, Qatar

Benjamin Figgis

Qatar Environment and Energy Research Institute, Doha, Qatar

Paper No. ES2017-3270, pp. V001T08A001; 5 pages
  • ASME 2017 11th International Conference on Energy Sustainability collocated with the ASME 2017 Power Conference Joint With ICOPE-17, the ASME 2017 15th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, and the ASME 2017 Nuclear Forum
  • ASME 2017 11th International Conference on Energy Sustainability
  • Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, June 26–30, 2017
  • Conference Sponsors: Advanced Energy Systems Division, Solar Energy Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5759-5
  • Copyright © 2017 by ASME


In this study, prototype electrodynamic dust shield (EDS) devices large enough to cover commercial photovoltaic (PV) modules were fabricated and tested in the lab and in the field. The EDS device consisted a polyethylene terephthalate (PET) substrate with screen-printed silver electrodes, and a PET cover sheet that bonded to the substrate using a synthetic rubber adhesive. The voltage-current characteristics of the EDS device was measured while square wave high voltage was applied to the device, so as to determine the power consumption of the EDS device. The EDS device was also tested in the field to determine its effectiveness in soiling mitigation.

Measurements showed that the EDS capacitance varied from approximately 600 pF in the air-conditioned lab to 2 nF in the field when the EDS device temperature reached 45 °C. The variation of the capacitance has significant relevance to the capacity requirements for the high voltage sources needed to energize the EDS device and its power consumption. Under laboratory conditions, the EDS power consumption was found to be 0.3 W m−2 at 6 kVp-p and 1 Hz, and roughly proportional to the voltage squared.

In the field test electrode damage was observed, due to electrical discharge at the electrode lines. As a result, the EDS operation did not show significant effect of soiling mitigation.

The results of this study are useful for designing high voltage sources for EDS operation, and for modifying the design and fabrication methods in order to produce EDS devices that can effectively repel dust in the field.

Copyright © 2017 by ASME
Topics: Dust



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