Mounting temperature impedes the conversion efficiency of photovoltaic systems. Studies have shown drastic efficiency escalation of PV modules, if cooled by nanofluids. Ability of nanofluids to supplement the efficiency improvement of PV cells has sought attention of researchers. This chapter presents the magnitude of improved efficiency found by different researchers due to the cooling via nanofluids. The effect of factors (such as, nanoparticle size, nanofluid concentration, flowrate of nanofluid and geometry of channel containing nanofluid) influencing the efficiency of PV systems has been discussed. Collective results of different researchers indicate that the efficiency of the PV/T systems (using nanofluids as coolant) increases with increasing flowrate. Efficiency of these systems increases with increasing concentration of nanofluid up to a certain amount, but as the concentration gets above this certain value, the efficiency tends to decline due to agglomeration/clustering of nanoparticles. Pertaining to the most recent studies, stability of nanoparticles is still the major unresolved issue, hindering the commercial scale application of nanofluids for the cooling of PV panels. Eventually, the environmental and economic advantages of these systems are presented.
Part of the book: Microfluidics and Nanofluidics