PRISED - Space
The triumphant advancement of the solar cells began in space travel; solar cells are still the energy source making life and work in space possible. Solar modules (are) used for the first time on March 17, 1958, when the USA launched the Vanguard I satellite equipped with them into space. The satellite had a total of 108 solar cells with an efficiency of 10.5% and was only used to charge the batteries it carried. After initial skepticism, this quickly subsided, because the satellite sent signals to Earth until May 1964, which meant the breakthrough for the solar cell in space travel, as the batteries used up until then had by far not this service life and still do not have today. As a result of this success solar cells have been continuously developed and are used in every satellite as well as on the ISS space station. There are a total of eight solar panels in use, which in units of 2 modules each can (be) aligned towards the sun via rotary joints. They generate a total voltage of 160 volts. The only problem here is the faster wear and tear of the solar cells due to the increased radiation values in space, which means that more work (is) required on the solar cells of the space station.
PRISED-Solar is working on the optimization of extremely high-efficiency solar modules; not only on the improvement of the conversion efficiency but also on the radiation resistivity of the solar modules.