Analysis of laminated glass beams for photovoltaic applications

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Laminated glass beams and plates are widely used in glazing and photovoltaic applications. One feature of these structures is a relatively thin and compliant polymeric layer for embedding solar cells. Proper design of photovoltaic glass modules requires an analysis of transverse shear strain distribution in polymeric encapsulant. In this paper a three layered beam with glass skins and a polymeric core is applied as a model structure to evaluate the mechanical properties. Robust relationships between the maximum deflection, the transverse shear strain of the core layer and the applied force in a three-point-bending test of laminated glass beam samples are derived. The first order shear deformation beam theory and a layer-wise type beam theory are applied. An expression for the transverse shear stiffness of the laminated glass beam is presented. The results for the maximum deflection are compared with the results discussed in the literature. Furthermore, a three-dimensional finite element analysis is performed to verify the applied beam theories. Three-point-bending tests for laminated glass beams with core layers from different polymeric materials are performed. The experimental data for the maximum deflection are compared with the derived expressions. © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.




Schulze, S. H., Pander, M., Naumenko, K., & Altenbach, H. (2012). Analysis of laminated glass beams for photovoltaic applications. International Journal of Solids and Structures, 49(15–16), 2027–2036.

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