Bifacial gain of rooftop solar PV systems


Bifacial solar modules have emerged as a promising technology in utility-scale photovoltaic systems, experiencing significant growth and capturing a substantial market share worldwide, as reported by the International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaic (ITRPV) 2023. Despite this progress, the potential of bifacial modules in rooftop applications remains largely unexplored. This paper aims to address this knowledge gap by conducting a comprehensive study utilizing Monte Carlo Ray Tracing techniques coupled with detailed electrical modelling. The primary objective of this study is to investigate the viability of implementing bifacial solar modules on rooftops by examining the potential energy yield gains. By conducting a detailed analysis on a representative rooftop in Canberra, Australia, real-world conditions, and variations are incorporated, providing a more accurate assessment of the energy yield gains achievable in such settings. The simulation results reveal that the implementation of bifacial solar modules on rooftops within Australia can result in energy yield gains of up to 22.6%. These findings demonstrate the considerable potential of bifacial technology in maximizing solar energy production in rooftop applications. The analysis shows significant implications of module and system design on the potential gain. For example, electrical optimisation of individual modules in a system accounted for 6.2% of the bifacial gain. The analysis considers full annual time-step simulation, typical mechanical mounting components, installation orientations and module characteristics, ensuring practical relevance and reliability of the results.


Reference Link

M. Ernst, X. Liu, C.-A. Asselineau, D. Chen, C. Huang, and A. Lennon, "Accurate modelling of the bifacial gain potential of rooftop solar photovoltaic systems,", Energy Conversion and Management, vol. 300, p. 117947, 2024.

Open access