Parameter estimation and screening of solar cells

J. Appelbaum*, A. Chait, D. Thompson

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aggregation (sorting) of the individual solar cells into an array is commonly based on a single operating point on the current‐voltage (I‐V) characteristic curve. an alternative approach for cell performance prediction and cell screening is provided by modelling the cell using an equivalent electrical circuit, in which the parameters involved are related to the physical phenomena in the device. These analytical models may be represented by a double exponential I‐V characteristic with seven parameters, by a double exponential model with five parameters or by a single exponential equation with four or five parameters. In this article we address issues concerning methodologies for the determination of solar cell parameters based on measured data points of the I‐V characteristic, and introduce a procedure for screening solar cells for arrays. We show that common curve‐fitting techniques, e.g. least‐squares, may produce many combinations of parameter values while maintaining a good fit between the fitted and measured I‐V characteristics of the cell. Therefore, techniques relying on curve‐fitting criteria alone cannot be used directly for cell parameterization. We propose a consistent procedure that takes into account the entire set of parameter values for a batch of cells. This procedure is based on a definition of a mean cell representing the batch, and takes into account the relative contribution of each parameter to the overall goodness of fit. the procedure is demonstrated on a batch of 50 silicon cells for Space Station Freedom.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)93-106
Number of pages14
JournalProgress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1993


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