The crucial role of energy in shaping our world cannot be overstated. It’s not just a factor in production processes; it’s a foundational element influencing international dynamics and the global economy. With the uneven distribution of energy resources across nations and the ever-growing demand for sustainable solutions, solar energy stands out as a promising avenue. The sun, a universal and unowned energy source, offers limitless potential. Within the realm of solar power, photovoltaic systems, which transform sunlight into electricity, are key to tapping into this potential and addressing the world’s energy challenges.

The solar power sector is experiencing a significant advancement with the introduction of new evaluation methods for solar panel enhancers, specifically targeting their long-term effectiveness. This pioneering work conducted by a research team, led by Dr Sakhr Sultan from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Professor Tso Ping from Multimedia University, is published in the Heliyon journal. These novel methods are focused on the durability of solar panel enhancers, a critical factor for the long-term growth and sustainability of the solar industry.

Dr. Sakhr Sultan, a principal researcher, highlighted the significance of this research: “The current focus in solar panel enhancer research is on enhancing solar panel performance. However, the long-term effectiveness of these enhancers wasn’t factored into existing evaluation methods, making it challenging to judge and compare their performance over time. To address this gap, we’ve developed a relationship between the enhancer’s longevity and the existing evaluation methods. The result is three refined assessment methods that are pivotal in differentiating the performance of a solar panel enhancer, with higher values representing better performance.”

These groundbreaking methods incorporate the element of time into existing evaluation models, leading to three improved methods: calculating the output over lifespan against cost per area (FYLPAC), per volume (FYLPVC), and per weight (FYLPWC). This integration allows for a more comprehensive assessment of solar panel enhancers, which is essential in determining their cost-effectiveness and long-term value.

Profressor Tso Ping, further explained, “The solar panel enhancer is an extremely important tool for accurately evaluating and comparing the performance of different solar panel enhancers. We’ve found that FYLPAC is particularly effective in categorizing solar panel enhancers across various models, offering a more refined tool for assessment.”

Initially, the study examined existing solar panel coolers and reflectors, underscoring their role in boosting the efficiency of solar panels. However, these traditional methods often neglected the vital aspect of durability, an issue this research aims to rectify. By emphasizing the lifespan of solar panel enhancers, the researchers are promoting a more sustainable and economical approach to enhancing solar energy.

The practical application and relevance of these methods have been demonstrated through experimental validation. The findings indicate a significant improvement in the evaluation and comparison of different models of solar panel enhancers, taking into account their lifespan. This approach is innovative and essential for guaranteeing the future sustainability of solar energy solutions.

This research marks a major step forward in solar energy, equipping manufacturers and designers of solar panel enhancers with a powerful tool for evaluating and improving solar power efficiency. It highlights the importance of considering the lifespan in solar technology assessments, paving the way for more sustainable and efficient solar energy systems.

Journal Reference

Sakhr M. Sultan, C.P. Tso, K. Sopian, Raheem K Ajeel, K. Sobayel, A. Ibrahim, M. Z. Abdullah, Development of assessment methods for photovoltaic module enhancing techniques using the lifespan parameter, Heliyon, Volume 9, Issue 11, 2023,

About the Authors

Dr. SAKHR M. SULTAN was born in Sana’a, Yemen, in 1987. He received the B.S. degree in electronics engineering, M.S. and PhD degrees in mechanical engineering from Multimedia University, Melaka, Malayisa, in 2012, 2017 and 2021, respectively. From 2012 to 2017, he was a Research Assistant with the Center of Advanced Materials and Green Technology, Malaysia.

From 2021 to 2022, he was a Postdoctoral Fellow in Universiti Sains Malaysia. Since 2022, he is a Senior Lecturer with the Solar Energy Research Institute, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia. His research interests include heat transfer and Solar energy.

Dr. CHIH PING TSO graduated with First Class Honours from Loughborough University of Technology, United Kingdom, in 1968. He obtained his Master’s degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, U.S.A., in 1970, and Ph. D. degree from University of California, Berkeley, U.S.A, in 1979. He was a Fulbright scholar and recently in the Stanford list of top 2 % scientist. He is presently a professor at Multimedia University, Malaysia.