POE Encapsulant in Solar Panels – Properties & Advantages
In the world of solar panels, encapsulants play a crucial role in protecting and enhancing the performance of solar cells, and thereby, of solar panels.
Among the various encapsulant materials available, Polyolefin Elastomer (POE) is the preferred choice for many solar manufacturers in certain applications.
What is POE Encapsulant?
POE encapsulant is a specialized material used in the construction of photovoltaic (PV) solar panels. It serves as a protective layer for cells that are placed between two layers of the encapsulants in the modules. This effectively seals and encapsulates the sensitive solar cells, providing them with the protection they need to perform efficiently and withstand the rigours of the environment.
Properties and Advantages of POE Encapsulant
POE encapsulant offers a number of advantages over Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA), including:
Superior moisture barrier
One of the standout features of POE encapsulant is its exceptional moisture resistance. It boasts a significantly lower water vapour transmission rate (WVTR) compared to (EVA). This means it is less likely to allow moisture to penetrate the solar panel and damage the solar cells. This property makes POE encapsulant an ideal choice for moisture-sensitive, high-efficiency solar cells, offering long-term protection and reliability.
No acid formation
POE encapsulants are free from acid formation. This feature of POE makes it an ideal encapsulant for Glass-Glass modules. These modules have a non-permeable structure, which means that formed due to EVA degradation can get trapped inside the module and damage the integrity of the solar cell and connections. The acid can chemically interact with the materials, leading to blackening and corrosion. In contrast, Glass-Backsheet modules, which have a permeable backsheet, allow any acid formed during encapsulant degradation to escape.
High PID resistance
Potential-induced degradation (PID) is a phenomenon that can lead to power losses in solar panels in hot and humid climates. POE encapsulant exhibits exceptional PID resistance, making it a preferred choice for Glass-Glass modules. These modules often contain free sodium ions that can lead to high leakage currents, but POE helps mitigate this issue, ensuring consistent performance.
Enhanced UV resistance
POE provides excellent protection against ultraviolet (UV) radiation, a known culprit for degrading solar cells over time. By offering robust UV resistance, POE helps maintain the efficiency and longevity of solar panels in harsh outdoor conditions.
POE encapsulant offers exceptional thermal stability, ensuring solar panels can operate efficiently in extreme temperature variations.
Learn more about RenewSys' POE Encapsulant here.