Class AAA small area solar simulator at an affordable price
Reliable LED light source for small area solar cell testing
Compact and low price, the Ossila Solar Simulator is ideal for characterizing small-area solar cells. It has an excellent AAA classification over a 15 mm diameter circular, ABA classification over a 25 mm diameter area (IEC 60904-9:2020 International Standard) and supplies a stable, reliable output requiring zero maintenance.
The Ossila Solar Simulator has virtually no warm-up time. Purchase with our automated manual solar cell I-V test systems (available as a bundle deal) and equip your laboratory with a fully integrated solar cell characterization system.
Just plug it in, turn it on, and start measuring.
Why Should You Buy the Ossila Solar Simulator?
The Ossila Solar Simulator offers great value and excellent quality. To achieve this, we use an array of powerful LEDs to accurately simulate the AM1.5G spectrum over a wavelength of 350 – 1050 nm. Furthermore, through our free, downloadable software, you have the ability to control the intensity of each individual LED. This gives you maximum control over the output of your Solar Simulator Lamp.
More Solar Simulator Features
- Lightweight body: 600 g (1.32 lbs)
- Head dimensions (L x W x H): 10.5 cm x 9.0 cm x 8.0 cm (4.13" x 3.54" x 3.15")
- Easy-to-use software that comes free with the Ossila Solar Simulator
More information available in specifications tab.
What is a solar simulator?
Testing and characterizing the operating parameters of materials or solar cells requires solar illumination. It is often impractical to test devices under the actual sun because of the inconsistency in solar radiation that occurs due to changeable weather and the day-night cycle. Comparing devices tested in different locations would also be challenging if you used the actual sun, as atmospheric effects mean that the intensity of solar radiation varies over the Earth's surface.
Solar simulators are light sources designed to alleviate these issues by supplying a reliable and controllable approximation of solar radiation relative to a standardized spectrum. By using carefully calibrated solar simulators, solar cells made in any lab around the world can be easily and systematically compared, which enables PV research to advance more quickly.
Solar Simulator I-V Test System Bundle
- Unbeatable Value
- Easy Cell Characterization
- Intuitive Software
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The Ossila Solar Simulator uses light-emitting diodes to generate its light output. The advantages of LEDs over arc-lamp or incandescent alternatives include:
- High efficiency
- Long operating lifetime
- High temporal stability
- Zero maintenance
- Spectral tunability
- Virtually zero warm-up time
- No explosion risk
These many advantages of LED light sources result in a solar simulator that can reliably and accurately reproduce the solar spectrum.
The modular design of the Ossila Solar Simulator gives you the freedom to create a solar testing system that is perfect for your needs. There are several accessories and bundles that are compatible with the Solar Simulator. Not only are these bundles incredibly good value, but they also allow you to personalize your set-up to suit the device architectures and substrates you use.
You can purchase the Ossila Solar Simulator as a stand-alone head unit for custom mounting, as a height adjustable system for use with your existing test setup, or packaged with our manual/automated Solar Cell IV Test System for a complete solar cell measurement solution.
There is no special programming or set up needed for the Ossila Solar Simulator to deliver dependable, high-quality solar irradiance. For most applications, all you need to do to get started is turn it on. By default, the lamp will deliver a calibrated output optimized to meet the solar spectrum.
However, our free, downloadable software allows you to control the LED outputs individually as well as change the total irradiance output. The system can also be controlled using a serial command library. This gives you complete control over the spectral output, allowing the lamp to be used for specialist measurements and spectra.
Compact Design, Adaptable Functionality
We have designed our solar simulator for busy lab environments where bench space must be used efficiently. The Ossila solar simulator has a very small footprint, so is perfect for high-density laboratories. It can be used in more specific environments where space is limited, such as a glove box* or dry box.
The Solar Simulator comes with its own optical breadboard, so it can be placed on any work top. However, both the stand and breadboard can be fixed to a larger optical bench surface if desired.
* Not for use in volatile environments.
The Ossila Solar Simulator is AAA rated for small area devices, which is ideal if you already use our 20 mm x 15 mm substrates. The Ossila Solar Simulator also delivers class ABA illumination over a larger area (25mm diameter). This is suitable for testing large area devices which can be made on our 25 mm x 25 mm substrate systems. We individually calibrate each system with a NIST traceable photo radiometer and include a performance report with each unit. Click on the image below to download a sample report.
Solar Cell Characterization
The most common use of a solar simulator is to characterize photovoltaic devices. To calculate solar cell device efficiency, the solar cell is illuminated under a solar simulator, and a current-voltage sweep is performed. To measure this accurately, you must tightly control the illumination spectrum under which the device is measured.
You can also use solar simulators to measure how the device efficiency degrades over time under operating conditions, also known as lifetime testing. The Ossila Solar Simulator can be used as a standalone system and integrated into existing test platform. It can also be combined with our solar cell I-V test system in our Automated or Manual Bundle.
Many materials need to withstand extended periods under sunlight, for example structural or aesthetic plastics that can become brittle or discoloured under prolonged ultraviolet light exposure. Other materials need to effectively absorb solar radiation, such as packaging materials to protect their contents, or sunscreen to protect skin. A solar simulator allows repeatable, quantitative measurements of a materials response to solar irradiation.
The study of the effects of light on living organisms is called photobiology. The most important source of light on Earth is the Sun as it drives photosynthesis in plants and circadian rhythms in both plants and animals. Lab-based studies of these processes may require a more controllable substitute for the Sun. A solar simulator is an ideal alternative.
Resources and Support
|Type||LED-Based, Steady State|
|Working distance||8.5 cm (3.35")|
|Irradiance (at working distance)||1000 W/m2|
|Maximum Lamp Time||10000 hours|
|Dimensions (head only) L x W x H||10.5 cm x 9.0 cm x 8.0 cm (4.13" x 3.54" x 3.15")|
|Weight||600 g (1.32 lbs)|
|Spatial uniformity over 15 mm diameter area||A|
|Spatial uniformity over 25 mm diameter area||B|
|Spatial uniformity over 32 mm diameter area||C|
How are Solar Simulators Classified?
There are several different recognized standards for classifying solar simulators, each of which is published by a different standards organization (IEC, ATSM, or JIS). Although there are slight differences between the standards, they all classify solar simulators based upon their performance in three key areas. These areas are:
- Spectral match to a standardized solar spectrum
- Spatial Non-uniformity
- Temporal instability
Solar simulators receive a grade A to C in each of these areas. The better the performance, the higher the rating. The latest IEC 60904-9:2020 standard, and the one which we follow, also allows for an A+ classification in each field.
Spectral Irradiance Graphs
The programmed spectral irradiance of the Ossila Solar Simulator is shown in the graph above. The Ossila light source is initially calibrated so that it emits a total integrated power of 100 mW/cm2 (1 Sun) over the wavelength range 350 nm – 1000 nm. The Ossila Solar Simulator achieves a Class A rating for each wavelength range defined by solar simulator standard guidelines. This calibrated Class AAA spectrum is emitted only a few seconds after powering up.
The Ossila Solar Simulator also allows you to adapt the output spectrum of your lamp as you desire. The above graph shows a spectral distribution at 0.7 Suns to demonstrate AM1.5G spectral match more clearly to the AM1.5G spectrum. Whether you value spectral match or total power irradiance, the Ossila Solar Simulator can adapt to meet your needs. For more information on how we present our solar simulator spectral data here, read our guide on interpreting spectral irradiance graphs.
The spectral match classification measures how well a solar simulator replicates the solar spectrum in terms of wavelength distribution. At 1 Sun irradiance at 8.5 cm, the Ossila Solar Simulator achieves Class A output in all wavelength categories. At this irradiance, the Ossila Solar Simulator achieves a Class A classification for spectral irradiance.
Solar simulators aim to distribute light uniformly across a sample, replicating sunlight. The spatial uniformity rating gives a measure of how uniform a solar simulator's distribution is.
At the working distance of 8.5 cm and output power of 1 sun, the Ossila Solar Simulator achieves a spatial non-uniformity class A rating over a 15 mm diameter, making it ideal for testing small area devices. It also achieves a class B rating over 25 mm diameter, and a class C rating at 32 mm diameter, so you also can test larger cells with the Ossila solar simulator with ABA or ACA classification.
The temporal instability classification measures the output consistency of a solar simulator.
The temporal instability graph proves that the light output from the solar simulator is stable over a long time frame, so it achieves a Class A Temporal Instability classification. This means you can conduct long-term experiments with the Ossila Solar Simulator without worrying about spectral fluctuation. This includes measurement such as solar cell lifetime measurements or experiments to measure light degradation effects.
The Ossila Solar Simulator Console enables you to control and customize the output of the Ossila Solar Simulator. You can choose the overall power level or control each LED in the Solar Simulator individually to tailor the output to your specific requirements.
Software Key Features
Intuitively-designed user interface
The software is designed to be simple and easy-to-use, no hidden menus or settings
Customize your light
Choose a predefined total output power or change each LED individually
No programming required
Just connect a Solar Simulator and start the software, no programming knowledge needed
Install the software on as many PCs as you want and download future updates for free
|Operating System||Windows 10 or 11 (64-bit)|
|CPU||Dual Core 2 GHz|
|Available Hard Drive Space||142 MB|
|Monitor Resolution||1440 x 960|
To the best of our knowledge the information provided here is accurate. However, Ossila assume no liability for the accuracy of this page. The values provided are typical at the time of manufacture and may vary over time and from batch to batch. Products may have minor cosmetic differences (e.g. to the branding) compared to the photos on our website. All products are for laboratory and research and development use only, and may not be used for any other purpose including health care, military, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, food, or commercial applications.