Study on thermal performance of semi-transparent building-integrated photovoltaic glazings

Tady Y Y Fung, Hongxing Yang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

171 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presents a one-dimensional transient heat transfer model, the Semi-transparent Photovoltaic module Heat Gain (SPVHG) model, for evaluating the heat gain of semi-transparent photovoltaic modules for building-integrated applications. The energy that is transmitted, absorbed and reflected in each element of the building-integrated photovoltaic (BIPV) modules such as solar cells and glass layers were considered in detail in the SPVHG model. Solar radiation model for inclined surface has been incorporated into the SPVHG model. The model is applicable to photovoltaic (PV) modules that have different orientations and inclinations. The annual total heat gain was evaluated by using the SPVHG model. The impacts of different parameters of the PV module were investigated. It was found that solar heat gain is the major component of the total heat gain. The area of solar cell in the PV module has significant effect on the total heat gain. However, the solar cell energy efficiency and the PV module's thickness have only a little influence on the total heat gain. The model was also validated by laboratory tests by using a calorimeter box apparatus and an adjustable solar simulator. The test results showed that the simulation model predicts the actual situation well.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)341-350
Number of pages10
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008


  • Building integrated photovoltaic
  • Heat gain
  • Semi-transparent BIPV modules
  • Solar radiation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Building and Construction
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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