The degradation of crystalline Si photovoltaic modules during damp-heat test was studied using some test modules with and without polymer film insertion by observing electrical and electroluminescence properties and by chemical analyses. Acetic acid generated by the hydrolysis decomposition of ethylene vinyl acetate used as an encapsulant is the main origin of degradation. The change in electroluminescence images is explained on the basis of the corrosion of electrodes by acetic acid. On the other hand, little change was observed at the pn junction even after damp-heat test for a long time. Therefore, carrier generation occurs even after degradation; however, such generated carriers cannot be collected owing to corrosion of electrodes. The guiding principle that module structure and module materials without saving acetic acid into the modules was obtained.
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