Study of hysteretic thermoelectric behavior in photovoltaic materials using the finite element method, extended thermodynamics and inverse problems

Autores UPV
Año
Revista ENERGY CONVERSION AND MANAGEMENT

Abstract

The main objective of the present work is to develop and prove a theoretical explanation based on the Extended Non-Equilibrium Thermodynamics (ENETs) for the hysteretical thermoelectric behavior observed in certain thin-film photovoltaic materials. The ENET introduces dissipative fluxes in the entropy balance that could explain this behavior. To verify this explanation from a numerical point of view, results are generated using a Finite Element (FE) formulation based on the ENET and already developed in previous publications by the authors. In addition, an identification Inverse Problem (IP) is formulated; a cost function is defined as the quadratic difference between experimental and numerical results and the IP is solved minimizing the cost function using genetic algorithms. The conclusion is that the loop-like distributions are due to energy dissipation introduced by dissipative fluxes that are closely related with relaxation times. Also, the FE-IP combination permits to find an approximated characterization of properties for several materials from single experimental curves. Finally, several numerical simulations are proposed for laboratory experiments to further validate the theoretical interpretation and to confirm the relation between relaxation times and hysteresis.