Modelling and simulation of building integrated Concentrating Photovoltaic/Thermal Glazing (CoPVTG) systems: Comprehensive energy and economic analysis

Giovanni Barone, Annamaria Buonomano, Roma Chang, Cesare Forzano, Giovanni Francesco Giuzio, Jayanta Mondol, Adolfo Palombo, Adrian Pugsley, Mervyn Smyth, Aggelos Zacharopoulos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)
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In this paper a novel Concentrating Photovoltaic/Thermal Glazing system (CoPVTG), developed at the Centre for Sustainable Technologies of the University of Ulster (Belfast, UK), and exploiting concentration technology, is presented and investigated. The innovative device consists in two glazed panels of which the external one is moulded to form several lenses that concentrate the solar radiation onto photovoltaic cells lines. Thanks to the specific behaviour of these lenses, the solar radiation is capable to reach the indoor environment during the winter months (when it's more useful), while it ends onto the photovoltaic cells during the summer months (reducing the solar gains while also providing electricity to the building). To increase the electricity production, a forced air flux can be created inside the glazed cavity to reduce the PhotoVoltaic cells temperature, and the obtained hot air can be exploited for diverse purposes. Finally, such device is conceived to be integrated into existing windows framing to boost its adoption in new or refurbishment construction. With the intention of studying the device under a wide range of boundary and working conditions, a dynamic simulation tool was developed in MATLAB environment and validated trough experimentally gathered data. With this tool it is possible to investigate the performance of the novel device integrated into several buildings. Specifically, a case study analysis was performed by considering an office building located in five different localities. From the conducted analyses, interesting results and design criteria are obtained. Specifically, the CoPVTG adoption returns higher electricity yield vs. standard semi-transparent window, ranging between 54 and 84% in case of cold and hot weather zones, respectively. In term of overall economic performance, the adoption co CoPVTG allow for a HVAC system running cost reduction, for the investigated case study, ranging from 20 to almost 100% depending on the considered weather zone.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1121-1131
Number of pages11
JournalRenewable Energy
Early online date28 Apr 2022
Publication statusPublished (in print/issue) - 30 Jun 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to acknowledge the 16th conference on sustainable development of energy, water and environment system, held in Dubrovnik from 10th to October 15, 2021.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 Elsevier Ltd


  • Building integrated photovoltaic/Thermal system
  • Photovoltaic window
  • Renewable energies
  • Solar concentrating device


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