10% Efficiency solar thermophotovoltaic systems using spectrally controlled monolithic planar absorber/emitters

Makoto Shimizu, Asaka Kohiyama, Hiroo Yugami

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

3 Citations (Scopus)


In solar thermophotovoltaic (STPV) generation systems, the thermal radiation from emitters heated by the high temperature solar absorbers is converted into electricity at a photovoltaic (PV) cell. STPV systems have some advantages over PV generation systems. For instance, it is possible to control the thermal radiation spectrum of the emitter. Generally, the PV cell has an inherent sensitive region where an incident photon excites the electron. Enhancing the thermal radiation in this sensitive region of the PV cell, therefore, increases the generation efficiency. Theoretically, the efficiency of STPV systems can reach up to 85% when Carnot efficiency is considered and up to 45% when a monochromatic radiation releasing emitter is used. However, the experimental STPV system is less efficient than theoretical one as a consequence of the large amount of heat loss from the high-temperature absorber/emitter system. The purpose of this study is to achieve a high-efficiency STPV generation system using a monolithic planar spectrally selective absorber/emitter. The temperature superiority of the monolithic planar absorber/emitter is estimated by using spectral and thermal properties of STPV system components. Using the enitre configuration of the STPV system, a system efficiency of over 10% is estimated in this study.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPhotonics for Solar Energy Systems V
ISBN (Print)9781628410884
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jan 1
EventPhotonics for Solar Energy Systems V - Brussels, Belgium
Duration: 2014 Apr 142014 Apr 16

Publication series

NameProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
ISSN (Print)0277-786X
ISSN (Electronic)1996-756X


OtherPhotonics for Solar Energy Systems V


  • High temperature photonic material
  • Photovoltaic
  • Solar thermal
  • Spectral control of thermal radiation
  • Thermophotovoltaic

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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