Solar simulators enable the measurement of (dark and) light IV characteristics and of power and efficiency of photovoltaic devices.
An artificial light source is used to create illumination conditions that are similar to those in natural sunlight. International standards hosted by ASTM, IEC and JIS allow to classify the properties of a solar simulator with respect to spatial light uniformity, spectral content of the light and time variation of intensity.
All Optosolar Solar Simulators are classified as AAA, with upgrade options to A+A+A+.
mW/m2 ... W/m2 - for indoor applications of solar cells, and to analyse solar cells at low outdoor levels for energy rating
1 sun: Standard solar simulators provide an irradiation of 1000 W/m2. They are adjustable from 800 W/m2 to 1100 W/m2.
Outdoor low light level option: The light level is adjustable between 200W/m2 and 1100 W/m2. Special option down to 50 W/m2.
500 - 1000 - 4000 suns: for concentrator solar cells, we offer systems with very high light intensity. We also offer spectral response measurement system capable to measure at concentrated bias light of several hundred suns
The light spectrum of our solar simulators can be filtered to represent AM 1.5 or AM 1.0.
For solar cells, we offer illumination areas:
5mm x 5mm, 1in x 1in, 2in x 2in, 4in x 4 in, 6in x 6in, 8in x 8in, 12in x 12in.
larger light areas - up to 3m x 3m or 6m x 1m, can be found in the section for Module testing PV Module Test Setups
Our measurement electronics allows to measure IV characteristics of solar cells (solar modules, module strings).
Measurement ranges can extend from 10 pA to > 20A, from mV to > 600V (for PV modules)
IV characteristics can be analyzed for typical device parameters, as e.g. diode model parameters, Thus, conclusions on module and cell properties may be drawn (e.g. saturation currents, series– and shunt resistance, recombination in various layers, and others). By adjusting light levels of the solar simulator, important figures of merit for power and energy rating can be determined.