Performance Comparison of Modular Photovoltaic-Thermal Solar Panels


The purpose of this experiment was to create a modular photovoltaic-thermal panel, which would be easily implemented and maintained. Three different prototype panels were tested simultaneously. The system was fixed at the optimal angle of 37.95° for the local area (Rolla, Missouri).The first two panels (Panel A & B) consisted of a highly conductive thermal sheeting and different sized copper tubing. The third panel (Panel C) consisted of copper tubing with an aluminum fin. Thermal images were used to verify the heat transfer across the panels and compare with the standard photovoltaic panel. The thermal efficiencies of panels A, B and C at 0.5 gallon per minute were 33.6%, 26.4% and 28.7%, respectively. Based on the thermal efficiency of Panel A three similar PVT panels were connected in series. Panels A1-3 at 0.5, 1.0 and 1.5 gpm had thermal gain plus electrical output equivalents of 931.9, 1281.2 and 1496.8 watts.

Meeting Name

2011 IEEE Green Technologies Conference, IEEE-Green 2011 (2011: Apr. 14-15, Baton Rouge, LA)


Civil, Architectural and Environmental Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Building systems; Green building components; Photovoltaic-thermal; Renewable energies; Sustainability; Photovoltaic effects; Technology; Tubing; Solar power generation

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

2166-546X; 2166-5478

Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version


File Type





© 2011 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), All rights reserved.

Publication Date

01 Apr 2011