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Multi-objective optimisation and sensitivity analysis of component influences on efficiency in air-based bifacial photovoltaic thermal systems (B-PVT)

1Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Johor, Malaysia

2Research Centre for Energy Conversion and Conservation, BRIN, Serpong, Indonesia

3Centre of Electrical Energy System (CEES), Institute of Future Energy, UTM, Johor, Malaysia

4 Faculty of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia

5 Mechanical engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Widyatama University, Indonesia

6 Solar Energy Research Institute, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi Selangor, Malaysia

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Received: 27 Mar 2024; Revised: 16 May 2024; Accepted: 29 May 2024; Available online: 14 Jun 2024; Published: 1 Jul 2024.
Editor(s): H Hadiyanto
Open Access Copyright (c) 2024 The Author(s). Published by Centre of Biomass and Renewable Energy (CBIORE)
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

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Bifacial Photovoltaic Thermal (B-PVT) technologies have seen significant advancements in sustainable energy production by converting solar energy into useful electric and thermal energies simultaneously. The present study explored the optimisation of these systems by first performing sensitivity analysis on design parameters to identify key variables affecting their performance efficiencies. The system design and performance were then studied simultaneously using a multi-objective optimisation algorithm NSGA-II. It was found that increasing packing factors from 0.4 to 0.8 leads to a 15% increase in both electrical and thermal efficiencies, while an asymmetry in channel depths could lead to an 8% increase in thermal efficiency.  Key design parameters such as transmissivity cover, mass flow rate, packing factors and channel depth ratios were found to have the most significant influence on overall system performance. Multi-objective optimisation of design variables results in a Pareto front describing trade-offs between solutions of conflicting objectives of performance. Optimisation with preferences towards overall efficiency over temperature differential produces solutions with a high overall efficiency yield of 70.79%, requiring specific values for mass flow rate (0.197 kg/s) and channel ratio (0.129), however at the expense of a reduced temperature differential of 5.12oC. Solutions with a balanced preference towards both objectives could produce a solution that is less biased in performance.

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Keywords: Bifacial Photovoltaic Thermal (B-PVT); Multi-Objective Optimization; NSGA-II; Efficiency Enhancement; Sensitivity Analysis.

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