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Proceedings Paper

Modeling energy production for concentrating PV flat panel
Author(s): B. Chang
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Paper Abstract

Increasing momentum around several different types of concentrating flat panel designs provides challenges with respect to modeling energy harvest. While there have been several simulation models created for standard flat panel PV modules, simulating low concentrating PV modules is more complex and less readily available. Specifically, since the optical characteristics of each low concentrating module is different, the energy prediction model must incorporate an optical model specific to the concentrator design. A PV module energy production model is created using a solar irradiance model (combining HDKR, NREL data and Meteonorm) and optical models for different panel types. Resulting energy production values are then correlated with actual measurements to verify the model and methodology. The simulation model is exercised across various geographic latitudes to illustrate how different module types can be most useful in specific locations. The results show an illustrative guideline for predicting module production and therefore selection. The model is specific to energy production and is useful to compare different module technologies under various conditions. Key findings include the following: optics engineers should consider application related issues when modeling various concentrating flat panel designs; computer scientists working on energy harvest software (e.g., PV Watts) need to include optics issues related to each concentrating flat panel; aberrations in climate databases can cause significant biases in energy harvest output; and system installers should follow manufacturer guidelines when installing concentrating flat panels.

Paper Details

Date Published: 11 September 2008
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 7046, Optical Modeling and Measurements for Solar Energy Systems II, 70460C (11 September 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.795246
Show Author Affiliations
B. Chang, SV Solar, Inc. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7046:
Optical Modeling and Measurements for Solar Energy Systems II
Benjamin K. Tsai, Editor(s)

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