Emissions from photovoltaic life cycles.

  title={Emissions from photovoltaic life cycles.},
  author={Vasilis M. Fthenakis and Hyung Chul Kim and E. A. Alsema},
  journal={Environmental science \& technology},
  volume={42 6},
Photovoltaic (PV) technologies have shown remarkable progress recently in terms of annual production capacity and life cycle environmental performances, which necessitate timely updates of environmental indicators. Based on PV production data of 2004-2006, this study presents the life-cycle greenhouse gas emissions, criteria pollutant emissions, and heavy metal emissions from four types of major commercial PV systems: multicrystalline silicon, monocrystalline silicon, ribbon silicon, and thin… 

Figures from this paper

Review of the Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Different Photovoltaic and Concentrating Solar Power Electricity Generation Systems

This paper contains an extensive review of life cycle assessment (LCA) studies on greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from different material-based photovoltaic (PV) and working mechanism-based

Emerging Trend in Life Cycle Assessment of Various Photo-voltaic Systems

This paper seeks to study the sustainability and environmental well-being of PV-based electricity generation systems by performing a thorough case study of life cycle assessment (LCA) of solar PV

Thin-film photovoltaic power generation offers decreasing greenhouse gas emissions and increasing environmental co-benefits in the long term.

A hybrid life cycle assessment using the most recent manufacturing data and technology roadmaps compares present and projected environmental, human health, and natural resource implications of electricity generated from two common thin-film PV technologies in the United States to those of the current U.S. electricity mix.

Life Cycle Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Thin‐film Photovoltaic Electricity Generation

We present the process and the results of harmonization of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions during the life cycle of commercial thin‐film photovoltaics (PVs), that is, amorphous silicon (a‐Si), cadmium

Life cycle assessment of high‐concentration photovoltaic systems

The environmental profiles of photovoltaic (PV) systems are becoming better as materials are used more efficiently in their production, and overall system performance improves. Our analysis details

Emerging Thin Film Solar Panels

Utilizing of photovoltaics (PVs) has been rapidly developing over the past two decades due to its potential for transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy based economies. However, PVs as fuel



Application of life‐cycle energy analysis to photovoltaic module design

This paper highlights results from a collaborative life-cycle design project between the University of Michigan, the US Environment Protection Agency and United Solar Systems Corporation. Energy

Life cycle assessment of crystalline photovoltaics in the Swiss ecoinvent database

This paper describes the life cycle assessment (LCA) for photovoltaic (PV) power plants in the new ecoinvent database. Twelve different, grid‐connected photovoltaic systems were studied for the

Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions in the Life Cycle of CdTe Photovoltaics

The life cycle of the thin film CdTe PV modules in the U.S. have been investigated based on materials and energy inventories for a commercial 25 MW/yr production plant. The energy payback times

Environmental Impact of Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Module Production

Together with a number of PV companies an extensive effort has been made to collect Life Cycle Inventory data that represents the current status of production technology for crystalline silicon

Energy payback and life‐cycle CO2 emissions of the BOS in an optimized 3·5 MW PV installation

This study is a life‐cycle analysis of the balance of system (BOS) components of the 3·5 MWp multi‐crystalline PV installation at Tucson Electric Power's (TEP) Springerville, AZ field PV plant. TEP

Emissions and encapsulation of cadmium in CdTe PV modules during fires

Fires in residential and commercial properties are not uncommon. If such fires involve the roof, photovoltaic arrays mounted on the roof will be exposed to the flames. The amount of cadmium that can

Environmental Life Cycle Inventory of Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaic Module Production

Together with 11 European and US photovoltaic companies an extensive effort has been made to collect Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) data that represents the status of production technology for