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Solar Glass: How to decide if it's hard enough

by nickfarfol
Tags: decide, glass, solar
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Jul28-14, 11:00 AM
P: 1

I am choosing glasses for a novel solar cell design, and part of the criteria is if the glass will be able to withstand hail and other things (?) falling from the sky, since this glass will be the cover glass for the entire solar cell. I can gather information on the glass including Knoop/Moh's hardness, Young's modulus, etc., but 1. I'm not sure which of these structural properties translates to being able to withstand things like hail and 2. If it's hardness, how hard is hard enough/how can I determine this?

Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks.
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Jul29-14, 02:33 AM
Sci Advisor
P: 1,958
Welcome to PF.

The hardness requirement is not very important. Hail is not particularly hard or abrasive.
It is the rocks in glaciers that do the scratching out of valleys. Ice melts under pressure.

The critical parameter will be toughness. Is toughened solar cover glass available?
What point impact can the glass withstand without cracking or shattering?

Very rarely there are hail storms that drop huge lumps of ice.
Those will destroy anything you select. That is what insurance is for.
Jul29-14, 11:02 AM
P: 190
Standard 2 mm sheet glass is good enough for greenhouses round here and seems to withstand pretty much everything except young boys with stones.

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