BIPV - Building Integrated Photovoltaic
Building Integrated Photovoltaic in short BIPV are materials which integrate photovoltaic solar panels, thin film solar cells in parts of the building envelope like roofs, facades etc.
Various creative ways have been used by architects & innovative designers in order to incorporate solar energy in their designs. This has become a stepping stone for the birth of solar energy based architecture.
History of Building Integrated Photovoltaic
BIPV System – Must Know Details!
A Building Integrated Photovoltaic system serves the dual function of being a building envelope & a source of power generation, my friend you already know about this!
Introducing such a system in a building reduces the cost of the building by replacing the conventional building materials. This in turn reduces the overall cost of the system. Speed of construction increases too. It can be said that such systems have lower system costs as compared to a dedicated PV system which requires special mounting systems and special areas for installation & commissioning.
A Complete BIPV system includes the following
Forms of Building Integrated PV Material
Facades – Facades are installed on existing buildings thereby giving them a fabulous new look.
Glazing – Transparent or Translucent materials can be used in place of existing architectural elements like window glasses or skylights.
Flat Roofs – They consist of a thin film membrane which has integrated thin film solar cells. Currently the highest percentage of BIPV installations is of Flat Roofs.
Solar Shingles - Can be used which serve the purpose of a normal shingle but have thin film solar cells integrated in them.
Flat plates of Transparent Glass serve as a skylight & even produce useful electricity.
Applications of BIPV
Using Pv for skylight systems will make it more economical & would make it a great design addition to your building.
The use of PV in roofing of any building will replace the traditional asphalt shingles and the seams and battens required for the same.
Solar Cells can be impregnated with the facade of the building there by complementing often replacing traditional glass. Much often these installations are vertical in nature thereby reducing the availability of incident solar energy. As such installations are of large size, the loss of power generated is compensated by the large surface area of the installation.
Include BIPV in shading devices by using completely opaque modules, this helps in providing shade to the inhabitants plus it also generates electricity.
Saw tooth roofs, awnings too can be complemented by using building integrated photovoltaic in building facades. They provide and added advantage of increasing the access to direct sunlight which results in more electricity generation. This also has another architectural advantage, it provides passive shading.
Improved Aesthetics of the building along-with a wonderful scope for power generation is one of the best known possibilities extended by BIPV. This also provides you with a golden lining of reduced cost & improved sustainability to your building. Building Integrated Photovoltaic are surely worth considering giving you more bang for your hard earned buck.
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