OSA's Digital Library

Applied Optics

Applied Optics


  • Editor: Joseph N. Mait
  • Vol. 51, Iss. 28 — Oct. 1, 2012
  • pp: 6848–6854

Planar waveguide concentrator used with a seasonal tracker

Sébastien Bouchard and Simon Thibault  »View Author Affiliations

Applied Optics, Vol. 51, Issue 28, pp. 6848-6854 (2012)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (837 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



Solar concentrators offer good promise for reducing the cost of solar power. Planar waveguides equipped with a microlens slab have already been proposed as an excellent approach to produce medium to high concentration levels. Instead, we suggest the use of a cylindrical microlens array to get useful concentration without tracking during the day. To use only a seasonal tracking system and get the highest possible concentration, cylindrical microlenses are placed in the east–west orientation. Our new design has an acceptance angle in the north–south direction of ± 9 ° and ± 54 ° in the east–west axis. Simulation of our optimized system achieves a 4.6 × average concentration level from 8:30 to 16:30 with a maximum of 8.1 × and 80% optical efficiency. The low-cost advantage of waveguide-based solar concentrators could support their use in roof-mounted solar panels and eliminate the need for an expensive and heavy active tracker.

© 2012 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(080.0080) Geometric optics : Geometric optics
(350.6050) Other areas of optics : Solar energy
(220.4298) Optical design and fabrication : Nonimaging optics

ToC Category:
Solar Energy

Original Manuscript: June 13, 2012
Revised Manuscript: August 30, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: September 4, 2012
Published: September 27, 2012

Sébastien Bouchard and Simon Thibault, "Planar waveguide concentrator used with a seasonal tracker," Appl. Opt. 51, 6848-6854 (2012)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. R. Winston, J. C. Minano, W. T. Welford, and P. Benitez, Nonimaging Optics (Academic, 2004).
  2. P. Benitez and J. C. Minano, “Concentrator optics for the next-generation photovoltaics,” in Next Generation Photovoltaics, A. Martí and A. Luque, eds. (Institute of Physics, 2004), Chap. 13, pp. 285–322.
  3. M. C. Chien, Y. L. Tung, and C. H. Tien, “Ultracompact backlight-reversed concentration optics,” Appl. Opt. 48, 4142–4148 (2009). [CrossRef]
  4. R. Winston and J. M. Gordon, “Planar concentrators near the étendue limit,” Opt. Lett. 30, 2617–2619 (2005). [CrossRef]
  5. J. H. Karp, E. J. Tremblay, and J. E. Ford, “Planar micro-optic solar concentrator,” Opt. Express 18, 1122–1133 (2010). [CrossRef]
  6. J. H. Karp, E. J. Tremblay, J. M. Hallas, and J. E. Ford, “Orthogonal and secondary concentration in planar micro-optic solar collectors,” Opt. Express 19, A673–A685 (2011). [CrossRef]
  7. W. C. Shieh and G. D. Su, “Compact solar concentrator designed by minilens and slab waveguide,” Proc. SPIE 8108, 81080H (2011). [CrossRef]
  8. J. G. Chang and Y. B. Fang, “Dot-pattern design of a light guide in an edge-lit backlight using a regional partition approach,” Opt. Eng. 46, 1–9 (2007). [CrossRef]
  9. S. Abdallah, “The effect of using sun tracking systems on the voltage-current characteristics and power generation of flat plate photovoltaics,” Energy Convers. Manage. 45, 1671–1679(2004). [CrossRef]
  10. C. J. Sletten, F. S. Holt, and S. B. Herskovitz, “Wide-angle lenses and image collapsing subreflectors for nontracking solar collectors,” Appl. Opt. 19, 1439–1453 (1980). [CrossRef]
  11. R. Winston and W. Zhang, “Pushing concentration of stationary solar concentrators to the limit,” Opt. Express 18, A64–A72 (2010). [CrossRef]
  12. M. A. Raymond, H. G. Lange, and S. Weiss, “Lens system with directional ray splitter for concentrating solar energy,” U.S. patent application 20110079267A1 (1Oct.2010).
  13. J. E. Ford, J. H. Karp, E. J. Tremblay, and J. M. Hallas, “System and method for solar energy capture and related method of manufacturing,” World Intellectual Property Office application WO 2010/033859 A2(18Sept.2010).
  14. R. Winston, “Light Collection within the framework of geometrical optics,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. 60, 245–247 (1970). [CrossRef]
  15. G. Grasso, A. Righetti, M. C. Ulbadi, F. Morichetti, and S. M. Pietralunga, “Competitiveness of stationary planar low concentration photovoltaic modules using silicon cells: A focus on concentrating optics,” Solar Energy 86, 1725–1732 (2012). [CrossRef]
  16. J. M. Kim and P. S. Dutta, “Optical effiency-concentration ratio trade-off for a flat panel photovoltaic system with diffuser type concentrator,” Sol. Energy Mater. Sol. Cells 103, 35–40 (2012). [CrossRef]
  17. K. A. Shell, S. A. Brown, M. A. Schuetz, B. J. Davis, and R. H. French, “Performance of a low-cost, low-concentration photovoltaic module,” AIP Conf. Proc. 1407, 146–149 (2011). [CrossRef]
  18. K. Yoshioka, K. Koizumi, and T. Saitoh, “Simulation and fabrication of flat-plate concentrator modules,” Sol. Energy Mater. Sol. Cells 75, 373–380 (2003). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited