Thermophotovoltaic (TPV) generators

Thermophotovoltaic (TPV) generators convert an infrared radiation into electricity by means of high efficient photovoltaic cells and consists of a fuel burner, heated emitter and heterostructure cells. TPV generators ensures:

  • High (up to 30%) PV conversion efficiency of radiation to electricity;
  • Any fuel may be used to heat the radiant surface;
  • Quiet. There are no moving parts, so the generation process is silent;
  • Low COx exhaust.

TPV generators based on GaSb cells with propane/butane fuel, basked-type metallic emitter. The developed TPV generators can produce the electric power of 3-20 W.

Solar thermophotovoltaic conversion is based on a principle of conversion of concentrated solar energy into radiation from heated emitters with subsequent photovoltaic conversion of this radiation by low-bandgap photoconverters. Essential advantages of such system, compared to regular sun conversion, are the possibility of choosing materials with selective emission spectrum and recycling of unused sub-bandgap energy. Higher emitter temberatures increase the PV conversion efficiency of TPV receiver.


A solar TPV system consists of a sunlight tracker, a sunlight concentrator (lens or mirror) and a receiver.

Hybrid Solar/fuel TPV systems  combine both mentioned energy sources, thus producing the electricity 24 hours/day, allowing saving the fuel. A hybrid SFTPV system consists of a sunlight tracker, a sunlight concentrator(lens or mirror), a fuel burner, and a receiver.