Honours Project 2011/2012 Written By Ben Preston

Photovoltaic Installation in Murcia, Spain
Edinburgh Napier University
This document details an investigation into the installation of a PV system in Murcia, Southern Spain.

“I have no doubt that we will be successful in harnessing the sun's energy... If sunbeams were weapons of war, we would have had solar energy centuries ago.”
Sir George Porter, 26th August 1973

Supervised by Tariq Muneer

20/03/2012

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Contents
Abstract ................................................................................................................................................ 1-7 1 2 Introduction ................................................................................................................................. 1-9 Literature Review ....................................................................................................................... 2-11 2.1 Energy in Spain ................................................................................................................... 2-11 Energy Prices in Spain ................................................................................................ 2-12 Solar Irradiance as a Resource in Spain ..................................................................... 2-14 Subsidy Reductions .................................................................................................... 2-15

2.1.1 2.1.2 2.1.3 2.2

Photovoltaic Generation .................................................................................................... 2-16 PV cell structure ......................................................................................................... 2-16 PV-IV Characteristic.................................................................................................... 2-19 Fixed Orientation, Single and Dual Axis tracking ....................................................... 2-20 Sky Clarity Index ......................................................................................................... 2-23 Shading ....................................................................................................................... 2-24

2.2.1 2.2.2 2.2.3 2.2.4 2.2.5 3

The Site ...................................................................................................................................... 3-25 3.1 Electricity Usage ................................................................................................................. 3-27

4

Methodology.............................................................................................................................. 4-28 4.1 4.2 4.3 Terms ................................................................................................................................. 4-28 Formulae ............................................................................................................................ 4-28 Method .............................................................................................................................. 4-29

5 6

Daily Global Irradiation .............................................................................................................. 5-31 Hourly Global Irradiation ........................................................................................................... 6-32 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Terms ................................................................................................................................. 6-32 Formulae ............................................................................................................................ 6-32 Method .............................................................................................................................. 6-32 Results ................................................................................................................................ 6-34

7

Hourly Diffuse Irradiation .......................................................................................................... 7-35 7.1 Terms ................................................................................................................................. 7-35 Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

1-3 7.2 7.3 7.4 8 Formulae ............................................................................................................................ 7-35 Method .............................................................................................................................. 7-35 Results ................................................................................................................................ 7-37

Slope Irradiance ......................................................................................................................... 8-39 8.1 8.2 8.3 Terms ................................................................................................................................. 8-39 Formulae ............................................................................................................................ 8-39 Method .............................................................................................................................. 8-40 Fixed & Seasonal Tilting ............................................................................................. 8-40 Tracking ...................................................................................................................... 8-41

8.3.1 8.3.2 8.4 9 10 10.1 10.2 10.3 10.4 11 12 12.1 12.2 13 14 15 16 16.1 16.2 16.3

Results ................................................................................................................................ 8-43

Panel Selection ........................................................................................................................... 9-45 Power Output....................................................................................................................... 10-46 Terms ............................................................................................................................... 10-46 Formulae .......................................................................................................................... 10-46 Method ............................................................................................................................ 10-47 Results .............................................................................................................................. 10-48 System Sizing ........................................................................................................................ 11-50 System Performance ............................................................................................................ 12-51 Assumptions ..................................................................................................................... 12-51 Findings ............................................................................................................................ 12-52 Conclusions .......................................................................................................................... 13-53 Recommendations ............................................................................................................... 14-55 Future Work ......................................................................................................................... 15-56 Appendices ........................................................................................................................... 16-57 Hourly Global Irradiation ................................................................................................. 16-57 Hourly Diffuse Irradiation ................................................................................................ 16-58 Hourly Slope Irradiation ................................................................................................... 16-59 Fixed and Seasonal Calculation ................................................................................ 16-59 Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

16.3.1

1-4 16.3.2 16.3.3 16.4 16.5 16.6 Seasonal Optimum Tilt ............................................................................................. 16-60 Tracking .................................................................................................................... 16-60

Sanyo HIT-250E01 Data Sheet.......................................................................................... 16-62 Power output ................................................................................................................... 16-64 Economics ........................................................................................................................ 16-64 Hardware Cost ......................................................................................................... 16-64 Maintenance Cost .................................................................................................... 16-65 Payback .................................................................................................................... 16-66

16.6.1 16.6.2 16.6.3 17 18

References ........................................................................................................................... 17-67 Bibliography ......................................................................................................................... 18-70

Table of Figures
Figure 1 – Olmedilla 60MW Photovoltaic Park, Seville (Scheuten Solar, 2007) .................................. 1-9 Figure 2 – European PV capacity (EurObserv'ER, 2011) ...................................................................... 1-9 Figure 3 – Spain Import Dependency (European Commission, 2011) ............................................... 2-11 Figure 4 – Energy Generation, Spain (European Commission, 2011) ................................................ 2-11 Figure 5 – Average Electricity Prices in Europe (European Commission - Eurostat, 2011) ............... 2-12 Figure 6 – Change in average electricity price (2009-2011) (European Commission - Eurostat, 2011) 212 Figure 7 – GDP per Capita (International Monetary Fund, 2012) ...................................................... 2-13 Figure 8 – Annual Irradiation in Spain (European Commission, 2012) .............................................. 2-14 Figure 9 – European PV Growth (Predicted and actual) (Solar Novus Today, 2009) ......................... 2-14 Figure 10 – Poly-crystalline (Solar Energy at Home, n.d.) And Mono-crystalline (Direct Industry, n.d.) Solar Cells ........................................................................................................................................... 2-16 Figure 11 – HIT Solar Cell Design (Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012)...................................................... 2-17 Figure 12 – HIT Panel Temperature Efficiency (Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012) ................................. 2-18 Figure 13 – Typical PV-IV Curve (Aldali, et al., 2011) ......................................................................... 2-19 Figure 14 – Tracked PV Installation spaced to avoid shading (McDermott, 2009) ............................ 2-20 Figure 15 – An example of an East-West single-axis tilting system (W.B. Stine, 1986) ..................... 2-20 Figure 16 – Comparison of various tracking systems in Albuquerque at winter solstice (W.B. Stine, 1986) .................................................................................................................................................. 2-21 Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

1-5 Figure 17 – Clarity Index Study (Cooke, 2007) ................................................................................... 2-23 Figure 18 – Effect of shading on power output (Solar Edge, 2010) ................................................... 2-24 Figure 19 – Installation Site (Google Inc., 2012) ................................................................................ 3-25 Figure 20 – Zoomed out installation site (Google Inc., 2012) ............................................................ 3-25 Figure 22 – Average Sky Clearness Index (Kt) for Murcia (Spain-Meteo, 1983-2005) ....................... 3-26 Figure 21 – Ambient Temperature, Humidity and Wind-speed (Murcia, Spain) (Tutiempo, 1973 to 2012) .................................................................................................................................................. 3-26 Figure 23 – Electricity usage per month ............................................................................................ 3-27 Figure 24 – Irradiation calculation steps ............................................................................................ 4-29 Figure 25 – Distance from data collection site to installation site (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012) ......................................................................................................................................... 5-31 Figure 26 – Horizontal and optimum slope irradiation (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012) ........................................................................................................................................................... 5-31 Figure 27 – Calc.4.0.9 (Muneer, et al., 2000) ..................................................................................... 6-33 Figure 28 – Monthly-averaged horizontal daily global irradiation converted to hourly global irradiance ........................................................................................................................................... 6-34 Figure 29 – Calc4.0.8 (Muneer, et al., 2000) ...................................................................................... 7-36 Figure 30 – Hourly Diffuse Irradiation per month ............................................................................. 7-37 Figure 31 – Average computer sky clearness index ........................................................................... 7-38 Figure 32 – Total Daily Irradiation...................................................................................................... 8-43 Figure 33 – Total Annual Irradiance by % .......................................................................................... 8-43 Figure 34 – Comparison of PV system slope irradiation - June ......................................................... 8-44 Figure 35 – Comparison of PV system slope irradiation - December ................................................ 8-44 Figure 36 – PV System Total Annual Output .................................................................................... 10-48 Figure 37 – Power output by % ........................................................................................................ 10-48 Figure 38 – Average monthly power output .................................................................................... 10-49 Figure 39 – Total 20-year electricity production ............................................................................. 12-52 Figure 40 – System Payback (years) ................................................................................................. 12-52 Figure 41 - % of global irradiance occurring seasonally ................................................................... 13-53 Figure 42 – Calc.4.10 (Muneer, et al., 2000) .................................................................................... 16-59

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Equations
Equation 1 – Calculation of hourly global irradiation ........................................................................ 4-28 Equation 2 – Calculation of cell temperature .................................................................................... 4-28 Equation 3 – Ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)................................. 6-32 Equation 4 – Ratio of global to diffuse irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)......................................... 7-35 Equation 5 – Hourly sky clearness index (Muneer, et al., 2000) ....................................................... 7-35 Equation 6 – Extra-terrestrial Irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000) ...................................................... 7-35 Equation 7 – Slope Irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000) ....................................................................... 8-39 Equation 8 – Tilted beam irradiation on a fixed slope (Muneer, et al., 2000)................................... 8-39 Equation 9 – Ratio of angle of incidence to solar altitude (Muneer, et al., 2000)............................. 8-39 Equation 10 – Reflected Irradiance (Muneer, et al., 2000) ............................................................... 8-39 Equation 11 – Beam Irradiance (Muneer, et al., 2000)...................................................................... 8-39 Equation 12 – Slope Plane (N-S Tracking) before noon (Aldali, et al., 2011) ..................................... 8-39 Equation 13 – Slope Plane (N-S Tracking) after noon (Aldali, et al., 2011) ........................................ 8-39 Equation 14 – Angle of Incidence (N-S Tracking) (Aldali, et al., 2011)............................................... 8-40 Equation 15 – Solar hour angle .......................................................................................................... 8-40 Equation 16 – Tilted beam irradiance on a moving slope ................................................................. 8-40 Equation 17 – Cell Temperature at a given hour (Duffie & Beckham, 1991) .................................. 10-46 Equation 18 – Module efficiency if Tcell is above NOCT ................................................................... 10-46 Equation 19 – Module efficiency if Tcell is below NOCT ................................................................... 10-46 Equation 20 – Power output per module (Duffie & Beckham, 1991) .............................................. 10-46

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Abstract
This investigation details the design of a solar PV system in Murcia, Southern Spain. The system is designed to meet an electricity demand of 620kWh in March. 3 systems are compared:    Building-integrated, fixed tilt Free-standing, seasonal tilting Free-standing, single-axis tracking

It was decided to discount the system using seasonal tilting, as calculations showed that it would only produce a 1.82% increase in power output over the fixed tilt system. Of the two remaining systems, the single-axis tracking system has been selected for implementation. This is due to a large increase in the power output (19.67%) over the fixed system, combined with the similar cost. The fixed system, while producing a fairly similar output at most times of the year, is out-done in summer by the tracked system, despite the tracking system being of a smaller rating. As a result, the fixed system requires a larger area to implement, and while it requires less funding per kWp, since the single-axis tracking system requires less overall hardware and is more efficient, the initial investment prices are roughly the same. The two systems also pay off in a similar amount of time; 10.93 years for the fixed and 11.51 years for the tracked system. As a result, the initial investment is recouped in a similar amount of time, with the tracked system going on to produce a much larger income through incentives after payback, and generating a larger amount of electricity over the life-time of the system.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

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Thanks to Tariq Muneer for his help and advice throughout this report, and to Tariq and Yasser Aldali for their previous work in the field which provided help countless times.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

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1 Introduction
Spain has more hours of sunshine per year than most European countries. As a result, the nation thrived as a producer of solar power and technology, becoming the 4th largest producer of solar power in the world.

The primary solar power technology in Spain until recently was photovoltaic, and it stills plays a major role in electricity production in Spain, with its largest photovoltaic park (located in Seville, Andalucía) being the largest plant of its kind upon completion, operating with a capacity of 60MW. Spain also contains another 21 photovoltaic parks with over a 20MW capacity, with a total capacity
Figure 1 – Olmedilla 60MW Photovoltaic Park, Seville (Scheuten Solar, 2007)

of 686.6MW through photovoltaic technology alone. Projects like these contribute large

amounts of electricity to the Spanish grid system, taking pressure off the public to pay inflating electricity prices caused by the nation’s dependency on energy imports. However, with the Spanish governments recent decision to reduce the feed-in tariffs for both roof-based and free-standing PV installations and to cap the maximum growth in capacity per year, the industry in Spain (and worldwide as a result) has taken a major blow.
France Spain Italy Germany

50000 Photovoltaic Capacity (MWpeak) 45000 40000 35000 30000 25000 20000 15000 10000 5000 0 2005

2006

2007

2008 Year

2009

2010

2011

Figure 2 – European PV capacity (EurObserv'ER, 2011)

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1-10 Between 2007 and 2008, Spain’s PV capacity increased by 2688MW, while that capacity only increased a further 779MW in the 3 years after 2008, just after the tariff reductions and growth caps were introduced. Spain is dependent on imports for almost 80% of its fuel used for electricity generation (European Commission, 2011). As a result, energy prices in Spain have been consistently on the rise, and are expected to continue rising. With an area of 505,782km2 and a population of 46.7 million, Spain is also one of the least densely populated countries in Europe, resulting in large spaces of sparsely populated land. The increase in energy prices, combined with abundant and reliable sunshine and large, unpopulated areas which could be utilized for PV and solar thermal electricity generation gives Spain the means they need to move away from their dependency on imports.

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2 Literature Review
2.1 Energy in Spain
Spain is a country situated in southern Europe which is strongly dependant on energy imports, with the vast majority of its domestic energy production coming from nuclear power stations. Since 1990, energy demand in Spain has increased dramatically, and continues to increase year on year.

Figure 3 – Spain Import Dependency (European Commission, 2011)

In 2004 Spain was dependant on imports for 77.4% of its fuel supply (European Commission, 2011), compared with the European average of 50.1%. As shown in figure 4, 38% of Spain’s electricity generation comes from gases, while 6% comes from petroleum products and 12% from solid fuels. Of these fuels, nearly 100% of gases and petroleum fuels and nearly 90% of solid fuels are imported. This amounts to roughly 50% of Spain’s electricity demand being reliant on imports from other countries. As a result, the prices of electricity in Spain have risen at a
Figure 4 – Energy Generation, Spain (European Commission, 2011)

faster rate than that of most other European countries; as world-wide fuel demand continues to increase, countries such as Spain that are dependent on fuel-purchases for electricity generation will be forced to pay a premium to satisfy their needs. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

2-12 2.1.1 Energy Prices in Spain

As a result of the dependency of Spain on imports for much of its electricity generation, the average price of electricity within the country has seen a sharp increase in recent years.
Germany 0.3 Spain France Italy Netherlands Portugal United Kingdom

Average Price of Electricity (€/kWh)

0.25

0.2

0.15

0.1 2009

2010 Year
Figure 5 – Average Electricity Prices in Europe (European Commission - Eurostat, 2011)

2011

In the past 2 years, the electricity price in Spain has jumped from an average of just below 0.16€/kWh to 0.195€/kWh, and increase of over 20%. In 2009 Spain was relatively cheap for electricity when compared with countries such as the Netherlands, Italy and Germany. Since then, however, the average price per unit of electricity in these countries has dropped significantly while Spain’s has risen drastically. Figure 6 shows the percentage change in average electricity price per
30.00% 25.00% 20.00% 15.00% 10.00% 5.00% 0.00% -5.00% -10.00% -15.00% Germany Spain France Italy Netherlands Portugal United Kingdom

Figure 6 – Change in average electricity price (2009-2011) (European Commission - Eurostat, 2011)

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2-13 unit, and shows that Spain’s has increased at a far sharper rate than any other European nation. This is expected to increase even further in the next few years. Spain also has a significantly lower GDP per capita than the majority of the other European countries listed, as shown in Figure 7. As a result of the price of energy rising quicker than most other European nations, and the general public having less money to spend (relatively) on these bills, it seems that solar PV in Spain could provide some relief to residents.

Figure 7 – GDP per Capita (International Monetary Fund, 2012)

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2-14 2.1.2 Solar Irradiance as a Resource in Spain

Due to drastically increasing energy prices in Spain, renewable methods of electricity generation which will allow the country to move away from dependency on imports for fuel could be the way forward. As a nation with an abundance of solar radiation at its disposal, Spain has always had the means to become one of the European leaders in solar thermal and solar PV production and technology. Indeed, for years it has been seen as forward thinking in this regard and coupled with its financial resources has had the capacity to become one of the front-runners in world-wide PV electricity production. For the majority of southern Spain, the annual irradiance exceeds 1500kWh/m2. This gives Spain great potential to take advantage of photovoltaic technology and solar thermal technology as a means to provide energy. This is especially true when compared with the likes of the UK where the highest annual irradiance is roughly 1250kWh/m2, covering an extremely minor portion of the country.
Figure 8 – Annual Irradiation in Spain (European Commission, 2012)

As a result of the availability of energy, Spain quickly established itself as one of the most advanced countries in producing solar energy, reflected in the growth of their grid-connected PV systems throughout the 21st century (Figure 9). Starting from 2006, Spain was at the fore-front of PV growth, and was expanding its grid connected systems at a rate far exceeding that of any other country. This peaked in 2008, when Spain saw the increase in capacity of grid-connected systems increase by 2.6GW
Figure 9 – European PV Growth (Predicted and actual) (Solar Novus Today, 2009)

this year alone, taking their overall capacity to 3.5GW and producing roughly 2% of the overall electricity

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2-15 requirement. The money pouring into the industry in Spain was also on the up, with investment in Spanish PV project increasing nearly 500% (Scientific American, 2008) in 2007 from the previous year. Not only was Spain profiting from the energy produced through solar means, but they were also benefitting from the manufacture of solar power technology, and exports 80% of its manufacturing output to Germany. 2.1.3 Subsidy Reductions

As a result of the financial crisis in 2008, the Spanish government took the decision to drastically cut feed-in tariffs (by 25% for building-integrated systems, and up to a massive 45% for ground based installations) afforded to grid-connected PV systems, and to limit the maximum capacity of systems that can claim subsidies to 500MW per year, less than 20% of the growth in the previous year. This drastically hindered the industry in Spain and had an impact on the industry world-wide, as seen in 2009 when their overall PV capacity increased much less than that of Italy (figure 9) as a result of companies rethinking their plans to invest in the Spanish market with uncertainties over the future of subsidies and hence the potential to cover costs and make a profit. In fact, in 2009 and 2010 combined, 100MW of capacity was added to the Spanish grid-connected system, compared with 2600MW in 2008 alone (Scientific American, 2008). Although the decision to reduce the feed-in tariffs on offer was largely expected, with other European countries having done the same in the wake of the financial crisis, one controversial aspect was the government’s decision to apply these cuts retro-actively. This would mean that large solar farms set up years before the introduction of the new feed-in tariff would now have retroactive payments to make based on the original feed-in tariffs, and could now expect to produce money at a much slower rate when compared with the rates they were promised upon installation. This resulted in sections of the solar industry in Spain going bankrupt, and further damaged investor confidence, causing some to pull out of Spain completely and causing potential future investors to flock to other countries where they could be afforded a more generous and predictable pay-back on investment.

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2.2 Photovoltaic Generation
2.2.1 PV cell structure

One of the most common specifications of a PV-module is the make-up of the silicon used. The three most commonly used modules consist of:    Mono-crystalline: Produced from a single crystal of silicon. Poly-crystalline: Produced from a piece of silicon containing many crystals. Amorphous: Uses a thin-sheet of silicon wrapped around another material such as steel.

Amorphous panels are generally used for small scale applications, such as on calculators and solar powered lights, as they are much cheaper as a result of requiring much less silicon (this can, however, be off-set by their low power density, requiring a much larger area for equivalent energy output). They also generally have much lower efficiencies than either mono or poly-crystalline, but are useful for situations requiring modules to run at high temperatures, as their efficiency remains relatively constant at extreme heat. Mono-crystalline panels are generally the most efficient modules available, but as a result of the difficulty of extracting silicon as a single crystal, they tend to be much more expensive than poly-crystalline, although again a portion of this cost can be off-set by the fact that they require less area to produce the same amount of energy. Poly-crystalline panels lie in between the efficiencies and cost of amorphous and mono-crystalline panels, and as such tend to be the most commonly used for commercial and personal applications where space is not the limiting factor. They are produced from a single piece of silicon containing many different crystals, resulting in their lower cost as a result of the difficulties of extracting a single intact silicon crystal. Another advantage to poly-crystalline panels is their recyclability. As they don’t require a complete intact crystal, silicon from older panels (mono and poly-crystalline) can be recycled and
Figure 10 – Poly-crystalline (Solar Energy at Home, n.d.) And Monocrystalline (Direct Industry, n.d.) (Bottom) Solar Cells

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2-17 used to produce new poly-crystalline panels. In this way, it is possible to obtain poly-crystalline panels cheaply second hand. A new type of panel is currently being developed by Sanyo called HIT (Hetero-junction with Intrinsic Thin layer) which has a number of advantages over conventional mono, poly-crystalline and amorphous panels:    High energy conversion efficiency Efficiency is preserved into much higher temperatures than mono or poly-crystalline Considerable output under diffuse and low-light conditions

Essentially, these new panels use a thin layer of a thin layer of mono-crystalline silicon surrounded by an even thinner layer of amorphous silicon (shown in figure 11). As with standard amorphous panels, the layer of amorphous silicon preserves the efficiency at high temperatures, while the mono-crystalline layer provides the increased efficiency of standard mono-crystalline panels, granting the best of both technologies.

Figure 11 – HIT Solar Cell Design (Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012)

The most significant advantage of this design is the option to work in much higher operating temperatures without drastically affecting the energy production of the system. This in turn can negate the need for a cooling system and off-set the cost of the panels themselves. They may also prove to provide a more reliable source of energy production due to their ability to operate well in diffuse and low-light conditions.

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Figure 12 gives a graphical representation into the improvements in temperature performance over standard crystalline silicon (c-Si). As shown, c-Si cells drop in efficiency by roughly 0.5%/°c, compared with only 0.3%/°c for HIT panels. This means that, taking cells with a normal operating cell temperature (NOCT) of 50°c and an efficiency of 15%, operating at 65°c standard c-Si cells would be operating at roughly 7.5% efficiency, while HIT cells would be operating at 11.5% efficiency. This can help to provide a more stable source of energy
Figure 12 – HIT Panel Temperature Efficiency (Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012)

production, increase the energy production significantly in places where the temperature can vary significantly

throughout the year and reduce the need for cooling systems to keep the cell temperature at optimal conditions.

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2-19 2.2.2 PV-IV Characteristic

The electrical output of a PV module is determined by its current-voltage characteristic, often shown in the form of a graph provided by manufacturers. The related parameters on the IV curve of a PV module are:

   

Current (I)

Voltage (V)

Irradiation (G)

Temperature
Figure 13 – Typical PV-IV Curve (Aldali, et al., 2011)

Figure 13 shows a typical PV-IV curve at a given temperature and value of irradiance. Manufacturers will generally provide a similar graph with various curves at different irradiance and temperature values, allowing accurate modelling of the IV curve for set conditions. Due to Ohm’s Law (Power = Voltage x Current), as the voltage drops so does the power output. The ideal position on the IV curve is the point at which the power output is at its shown in Figure 13 as Pm. To ensure PV systems are kept at their value for maximum power output as often as possible, maximum power point tracking systems are often employs. These systems sample the output of the solar cells and adjusts the resistant load on the circuit, in turn effecting the current and voltage (Resistance = Voltage/Current), in order to keep the system at its maximum power output as often as possible. Maximum power point tracking is absolutely essential to ensure the output of a PV system is as stable and efficient as possible, and is being more commonly built in to inverters of gridconnected systems.

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2-20 2.2.3 Fixed Orientation, Single and Dual Axis tracking

One of the key decisions when designing a photovoltaic system is the orientation and tilt of the system. Dependant on the location of the system, an optimal orientation is determined which will allow maximisation of the radiation occurring on the surface. Panels located in the northern hemisphere should face true south, while those located in the southern hemisphere should face true north to maximise energy output. Note that true north and south are not the same as magnetic north and south, and corrections will need to be made for the difference which varies by location.

Figure 14 – Tracked PV Installation spaced to avoid shading (McDermott, 2009)

The next key parameter is the tilt of the panels from horizontal when using fixed panels. In general, this is taken as the latitude for the site, however as a result of the varying height of the sun in summer and winter this can vary by as much as -15° in summer and +15° in winter. As a result, when using fixed tilt systems it can be beneficial to adjust the tilt angle of the system twice a year, once at the end of summer and once at the end of winter to match the optimum conditions at that time of year.

Figure 15 – An example of an East-West single-axis tilting system (W.B. Stine, 1986)

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2-21 Single axis systems generally track only to optimise the solar azimuth angle (the clock-wise angle of the sun from north), while dual-axis systems track both the solar azimuth and the tilt angle from horizontal. Compared to fixed tilt systems, increases in energy output for equivalently sized systems of 27-40% can be expected. This, however, comes at the cost of simplicity. As a result of tracking systems having more moving parts, sensors and added complexity, additional maintenance is required and the risk of a problem arising is greater. Dual-axis tracking have additional complexity over single-axis tracking, and thus are more liable to failure and to incur greater maintenance costs. As a result, it is important to understand if the additional energy gains of using a dual-axis tracking system over a single-axis are going to be of benefit, when taking into account the additional costs and risks of failure.

Figure 16 – Comparison of various tracking systems in Albuquerque at winter solstice (W.B. Stine, 1986)

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2-22 It is well known that tracking system will out-perform a fixed angle PV system on annual energy production, but taking into account the cost of the system, how feasible is it to install a tracking system? A study was performed (Wattsun, 2010) comparing 4 different PV systems located in Madison, Wisconsin, USA. The system types are listed in table 1. For the purposes of the report, the annual electrical output was taken to be equivalent. System 1 No 35° System 2 No 55° System 3 No 35° in Summer/55° in Winter 4 5089 $8.63 $34,520 System 4 Dual Axis N/A

Tracking? Orientation

DC Rating (kW) Annual AC Output (kWh) Cost/DC Watt System Cost

4 4952 $8.63 $34,520

4 4758 $8.63 $34,520

3 4852 $9.96 $31,872

Table 1 – System Comparison (Wattsun, 2010)

The cost per DC watt was calculated as follows:     $8.63 per installed DC watt (average installed cost of PV system in the USA) Fixed racking price of $0.91 per DC watt Dual Axis tracking rack price of $2.24 per DC watt This amounts to a difference of $1.33 per DC watt between the fixed and tracking system ($2.24-$0.91) Seasonal adjustments are a commonly used way to increase the output of fixed PV systems; the tilt angle of the PV array is changed twice per year (summer and winter solstice) to match the optimum angle at that time of year. System 3 makes use of seasonal adjustments, showing a slight increase in power output over the fixed systems. This is a suitable way to increase output in situations where finances do not permit a tracking system to be installed. The finding from the report was that although a tracking system of equivalent physical size would cost more than the fixed system, considering systems of the same electrical output the reduction in system size (and hence cost through a reduction in the number of panels required) actually results in a cheaper overall system. This is not taking into account the fact that if the system is to be groundbased, less land will be required and hence there could be even further savings. It should be noted that since this investigation was carried out in the USA, some aspects of it will differ when applied to Europe (specifically Spain). However, the principle behind it remains the Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

2-23 same, and the information is as relevant to Europe as America regarding fixed tilt and tracked systems. It should also be noted that this only takes dual-axis tracking systems into consideration. 2.2.4 Sky Clarity Index

The most important factor in determining the effectiveness of a dual-axis system over single-axis is the sky-clarity index. This is a measure of how much pollution, clouds and weather absorb, reflect or refract the suns energy. Essentially, it is a measurement of the level of the specular or direct sunlight available, as opposed to the diffuse sun-light available during areas of cloud-cover or pollution. A high sky-clarity index of around 0.7 to 0.8 or above is required for dual-axis trackers to realise their potential enough to make them feasible. Essentially, when there is a large amount of diffuse light, such as in the case of a lower sky clarity index, regardless of whether the panel is tilted along the second axis the majority of energy can be used. This will result in increases of only 3-4% when using dual-axis over single-axis, not enough to justify the increase in cost and decrease in reliability. Conversely, in areas of high-sky clarity index where there is a large amount of direct light dual-axis systems are capable of an increase of 40-45% over a fixed roof-based system, and of up to 20% or so over single-axis tracking systems.

Figure 17 – Clarity Index Study (Cooke, 2007)

Figure 17 shows the outcome of a study performed by Dr David Lubitz of the University of Guelph, Ontario, in which 180 solar sites throughout North America were studied in detail to gain an accurate picture of their sky clarity index and its effect on the annual irradiation gains of tracking systems relative to a south facing fixed tilt system. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

2-24 It can be clearly seen that as the sky clarity index increases, as do the increases in irradiance felt by dual-axis tracking panels over single-axis, hence making them more economically viable the higher the index. It can also be seen that compared with fixed angle systems, even single axis tracking systems with no seasonal tilting offer improvements of 25-27% in the Ontario area during summer, and 23-25% in winter, which in turn will provide a huge improvement in energy input throughout the life-time of the system for a (relatively) small initial outlay. 2.2.5 Shading

Since Solar PV panels are connected in series as part of a larger string, a loss in power output in one module (be it the first or last in the chain) will result in a loss of powers in the others. For this reason, shading on PV systems can cause large drops in the overall lifetime performance of a PV system. Some systems can get around this problem by using an inverter which will bypass a panel in partial shading, causing losses in that panel only. None-the-less, the energy loss throughout the lifetime of the system will still be significant. Figure 18 shows the effect of 25% shading (loss of 25% of illuminance) on the power output of a PV system. The losses in this system account for almost a third of the overall panel output, which if connected to the string in series can result in the same loss over the entire system.
Figure 18 – Effect of shading on power output (Solar Edge, 2010)

Shading is generally avoided in the system design stage. Environmental shading can be avoided to a degree by ensuring the panels are installed in a flat area, with no surrounding trees or other tall objects which may cause a problem.

Self-shading of panels is another issue, especially problematic in the installation of tracked PV systems. In this scenario, the panels block each other out as the sun shadows cast by them move with the sun throughout the day. This effect can be compounded when the panels themselves also move. To avoid this, shading analyses must be performed to ensure the panels are spaced

appropriately. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

3-25

3 The Site
The site to be considered for PV installation is situated not far from Murcia, Spain. For the purposes of this investigation, all irradiance data has been provided by PVGIS from San Javier, Murcia (Latitude: 37.783, longitude: -0.8). The home in Murcia to be fitted with PV is highlighted here, with the most suitable (south-facing) roof shown.

N

Figure 19 – Installation Site (Google Inc., 2012)

A zoomed out birds-eye view of the area surrounding the home. The home is shown circled in red, while the patch of land highlighted by the red rectangles are flat, barren and disused pieces of land which would be suitable for PV installation.
Figure 20 – Zoomed out installation site (Google Inc., 2012)

The property is a 4 bedroom detached holiday home containing roof space facing all direction, although this space is limited. Due to Spain being situated in the northern hemisphere, the most ideal section of roof is south facing, of which there is an area of 30m2, pitched at 22°. According to PVGIS, the optimum fixed slope for the site is 34°; a mount will be used to optimise the pitch angle on the roof to maximise the system output. For the ground-based system, there is a large nearby area flat, arid landscape stretching for miles. The area would be ideal for a ground-based PV installation due to the flat, barren landscape reducing the risk of shading.

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3-26

Ambient Temperature (C)
75.00 70.00 65.00 60.00 55.00 50.00 45.00 40.00 35.00 30.00 25.00 20.00 15.00 10.00 5.00 0.00 1 2 3 4 5 6
Average Ambient Temp. (C) and Humidity (%)

Humidity (%)

Windspeed (m/s)
15.00 14.00 13.00 12.00 11.00 10.00 9.00 8.00 7.00 6.00 5.00 4.00 3.00 2.00 1.00

7

8

9

10

11

12

Month Figure 221 – Ambient Temperature, Humidity and Wind-speed (Murcia, Spain) (Tutiempo, 1973 to 2012)

Temperature, humidity and wind-speed data was gathered from Tutiempo which will be used to determine the temperature of the chosen PV cells throughout the year and hence the efficiency of the cells. The data taken from Tutiempo is an average of recorded data from 1973 to 2012.
Monthly Average Kt 0.72 0.71 0.7 0.69 0.68 0.67 0.66 0.65 0.64 0.63 0.62 Average Kt

Figure 212 – Average Sky Clearness Index (Kt) for Murcia (Spain-Meteo, 1983-2005)

An average of the sky clearness index for Murcia from the years 1983 to 2005 is shown in figure 22. As described in section 2.2.4, this information will be useful in determining the viability of installing dual-axis tracking systems on the site. According to the study detailed in 4.2.4, a sky clarity index of at least 0.7-0.8+ is required to make dual-axis tracking viable. For this reason, only single-axis tracking will be considered.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

Windpseed (m/s)

3-27

3.1 Electricity Usage
Details of the electricity usage of the property have been supplied for the year 2010 however due to the property being used as a holiday home, occupancy can be sporadic. As such, some month’s electricity usage is vastly higher than others (figure 23).
2500 Electricity Used (kWh) 2000 1500 1000 500 0

Figure 23 – Electricity usage per month

The average electricity usage per month is 827.17kWh, and the system will be designed with the aim of providing 75% of this value in March.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

4-28

4 Methodology
4.1 Terms
Ig - Global irradiation (W/m2) Id - Diffuse irradiation (W/m2) Ib - Beam irradiation (W/m2) Ir – Reflected irradiation (W/m2) Tc – Temperature of the PV cells (°c) Ta – Ambient air temperature (°c) Gt – Tilt Irradiance (W/m2) τ – Transmittance of anything covering the cells (No units, ratio) α – Fraction of radiation incident on the surface of the cells that is absorbed (No units, ratio) ηc – Efficiency of the module in converting incident radiation to electrical energy (No units, ratio)

4.2 Formulae

Equation 1 – Calculation of hourly global irradiation

Equation 2 – Calculation of cell temperature

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4-29

4.3 Method
Irradiation from the sun is found in four forms:     Ig: Global irradiation - The total irradiation on a surface. Id: Diffuse irradiation – The indirect irradiation on a surface cause by scattering of direct irradiation due molecules and particles in the atmosphere. Ib: Beam irradiation – The direct irradiation on a surface. Ir: Reflected irradiation – The irradiation on a surface from beam irradiation reflected from the ground and other surroundings. These are linked using the following equation:

Daily Horizontal Global Irradiation

Hourly Horizontal Global Irradiation

Hourly Horizontal Diffuse Irradiation

Fixed

Tracking

Hourly Slope Irradiation

Hourly Beam Irradiation

Hourly Slope Irradiation
Figure 24 – Irradiation calculation steps

Figure 24 shows the steps to obtaining the irradiation required; the initial daily horizontal global irradiance is obtained from PVGIS (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012).

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

4-30 Once the hourly slope irradiance on the surfaces has been calculated, the temperature and windspeed data from Tutiempo (Tutiempo, 1973 to 2012) can be used to calculate the temperature of the PV cells (Tcell). To do this, equation 23.3.3 from Solar Engineering of Thermal Processes was used (Duffie & Beckham, 1991, p. 780), shown below.

The ratio of τα/UL can be found using:

where the values of Tc, Ta and GT are at the normal operating cell temperature (NOCT). According to Aldali et al., “This is defined as the cell or module temperature that is reached when the cells are mounted in their normal way at a solar radiation level of GT = 800W/m2, a wind-speed of 1m/s, an ambient temperature of 20°c and no-load operation (module efficiency ηc = 0).” The tracking proposed tracking system for the site is single axis and tracks the suns movement along the north-south axis. This allows the surface to be moved to the optimum tilt angle for each given day of the year, maximising output.

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5-31

5 Daily Global Irradiation
The first step in this investigation was to gather irradiance data for the site, which was obtained from the European Commission’s database for solar resource and photovoltaic potential (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012), whose data is supplied by NASA. As the wind-speed, humidity and temperature data was taken from San Javier airport in Murcia, the irradiance data has also been taken from here.

At a distance of 17km the environmental conditions will
17km

not vary enough to have a large impact on the outcome of the investigation.

Figure 25 – Distance from data collection site to installation site (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012)

The optimum fixed slope at this location Is 34° although the output of a fixed system can be improved through seasonal adjustments; adjusting the tilt of the system twice per year, once at the winter solstice and once at the summer solstice.

Figure 26 – Horizontal and optimum slope irradiation (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012)

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6-32

6 Hourly Global Irradiation
6.1 Terms
Ig – Hourly global irradiation (W/m2) ω – Hour from solar noon (Hours) ωs – Day-length (Hours) rG – Ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation (No units, ratio)

6.2 Formulae

Equation 3 – Ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)

6.3 Method
Muneer’s model (Muneer, et al., 2000, pp. 95-98) for analysis of irradiance has been used to convert the average global irradiation per day of each month to hourly values. This was done using the program providing in Windows in Buildings, Calc.4.0.9. For the purposes of these steps, the horizontal values for global irradiation have been used, as the slope angle will be considered later. As the calculations are time-consuming, analysis of irradiation has been performed for the middle day of each month (16th of January, 14th of February etc) as this will give the most accurate representation of the actual irradiance while drastically reducing the computations required. Since the irradiance data provided by PVGIS is given in the format of average global irradiation for each month, this must first be broken down into hourly values; Muneer et al. provide a method for doing so. Muneer’s literature is aimed at the analysis of windows in building design, but many of the same concepts apply and can be used in the case of photovoltaics.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

6-33 Muneer cites the work of Whillier (1956), Liu and Jordan (1960) and Collares-Pereira and Rabl (1979) as the key work in this field. The ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation can be calculated using:

which was presented by Liu and Jordan (1960), where:

Using this equation, the ratio of hourly to global irradiation is obtained, which can then be used to convert the monthly-averaged daily irradiation values given by PVGIS into hourly values.

Figure 27 – Calc.4.0.9 (Muneer, et al., 2000)

An equivalent method for calculating the hourly diffuse irradiation is provided, but is not needed here.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

6-34

6.4 Results
The hourly horizontal global irradiation values for each month are shown in figure 28. As expected, in the summer months (May, June, July and August) starting at 5am the irradiance increases throughout the day, peaking at around midday, before falling again until it reaches zero at 6pm. Irradiance isn’t felt on the horizontal until later in the day during other months, due to the sun being closer to the horizon and hence not rising as high in the sky. The maximum irradiation on the horizontal surface occurs in July, while the lowest occurs in December.
January July February August March September April October May November June December

900 850 800 750 700 650 600 550 500 450 400 350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0

Hourly Global Irradiance (Ig, w/m2)

5.5

6.5

7.5

8.5

9.5

10.5

11.5 Hour (24h)

12.5

13.5

14.5

15.5

16.5

17.5

Figure 28 – Monthly-averaged horizontal daily global irradiation converted to hourly global irradiance

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7-35

7 Hourly Diffuse Irradiation
7.1 Terms
Id – Hourly diffuse irradiation (W/m2) Ig – Hourly global irradiation (W/m2) Ie – Hourly extra-terrestrial irradiation (W/m2) DN – Day-number of the year (i.e. 14th of January = 14, 3rd of February = 34 etc.) SOLALT – The elevation angle of the sun from the horizon (°) Kt – Hourly Clearness Index (no units, ratio)

7.2 Formulae

Equation 4 – Ratio of global to diffuse irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)

Equation 5 – Hourly sky clearness index (Muneer, et al., 2000)

[

]

Equation 6 – Extra-terrestrial Irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)

7.3 Method
The program provided by (Muneer, et al., 2000), Calc.4.0.8, was used to convert the hourly global irradiation values into diffuse irradiation values. This program uses the ratio of global to diffuse irradiation and its connection to the sky clearness index to calculate the diffuse irradiation.

Since we know the hourly global irradiation and the sky clearness index can be estimated using the equation:

Extra-terrestrial irradiation (Ie) is the solar irradiation directly outside the Earth’s atmosphere, it remains relatively constant, but varies dependant on the solar altitude and day-number. It is given by: [ ]

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

7-36 This allows calculation of Ie using site data for a given day, calculation of Kt and hence calculation of Id by re-arranging equation 4 to give:

Figure 29 – Calc4.0.8 (Muneer, et al., 2000)

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7-37

7.4 Results
January July February August March September April October May November June December

400 350 Hourly Diffuse Irradiation (Id, W/m2) 300 250 200 150 100 50 0

5.5

6.5

7.5

8.5

9.5

10.5

11.5 12.5 Hour (24H)

13.5

14.5

15.5

16.5

17.5

Figure 30 – Hourly Diffuse Irradiation per month

Figure 30 shows the hourly diffuse irradiation values as calculated using calc.4.0.8. As shown, the diffuse irradiation is much less predictable than the global irradiation. This is due to the dependency of Id on Kt. The diffused irradiation is the indirect radiation on a surface caused by the break-up of direct beam irradiation due to pollutants, particles and molecules in the atmosphere. As such, it is highly dependent on the atmosphere, which changes over time. Due to the calculation for Ie, and hence Kt not changing in a linear fashion throughout the year, Kt fluctuates in a similarly non-linear way, resulting in some days a times having a higher or lower Kt value, and from that a higher or lower Id. In reality, as Kt is so heavily dependent on a number of factors from pollutants in the air to cloud cover on a given day, it is a difficult figure to assess accurately, and may fluctuate wildly from one day of the year to the same day the year after.

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

7-38 Figure 31 shows an average of the sky clearness index as calculated using equations 5 and 6. As shown, the calculated values for Kt average at 0.33 per year. This is compared with an average of the recorded values shown in section 6, taken over a 22-year period (Spain-Meteo, 1983-2005).
0.6 0.5 0.4 0.3 0.2 0.1 0

Figure 31 – Average computer sky clearness index

As a result of the Kt used being much lower than the actual, recorded value, it is likely that the diffuse irradiation values calculated are higher than they would be in real life as a result of particles in the atmosphere to scatter beam irradiation; this will also result in the beam irradiation likely being higher.

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8-39

8 Slope Irradiance
8.1 Terms
             Gt – Hourly slope irradiation (W/m2) Ig – Hourly global (total) irradiation (W/m2) Id,tlt – Hourly diffuse irradiation on a tilted surface (W/m2) Ib,tlt – Hourly beam irradiation on a tilted surface (W/m2) Iref,tlt – Hourly reflected irradiation on a tilted surface (W/m2) SOLALT - The elevation angle of the sun from the horizon (°) θ – Angle of Incidence of the sun’s rays (°) ρ – Albedo (No units, ratio) β – Tilt Angle of the surface (°) ϒ – Surface azimuth angle (°) φ – Site Latitude (°) ω – Solar hour angle (°) δ – Solar Declination (°)

8.2 Formulae

Equation 7 – Slope Irradiation (Muneer, et al., 2000)

Equation 8 – Tilted beam irradiation on a fixed slope (Muneer, et al., 2000)

[

]

Equation 9 – Ratio of angle of incidence to solar altitude (Muneer, et al., 2000)

Equation 10 – Reflected Irradiance (Muneer, et al., 2000)

Equation 11 – Beam Irradiance (Muneer, et al., 2000)

[

]

Equation 12 – Slope Plane (N-S Tracking) before noon (Aldali, et al., 2011)

[

]

Equation 13 – Slope Plane (N-S Tracking) after noon (Aldali, et al., 2011)

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

8-40 [ ]

Equation 14 – Angle of Incidence (N-S Tracking) (Aldali, et al., 2011)

[

]

Equation 15 – Solar hour angle

Equation 16 – Tilted beam irradiance on a moving slope

8.3 Method
8.3.1 Fixed & Seasonal Tilting

Now that the hourly global and diffuse irradiation has been calculated for each hour of the middle day of each month on a horizontal surface, the hourly slope irradiation can be calculated. This is the irradiance on a tilted surface per hour. For the fixed system, Calc.4.10 is used to determine the slope irradiation from Id and Ig. This program makes use of solar geometry to convert the slope and global irradiation on the horizontal to global and diffuse on a pitched slope; it also calculates the reflected irradiation by using a ground albedo (the amount of irradiance a surface will reflect) specified by the user. For the purposes of these calculations, a ground albedo of 0.6 has been used as the area is surrounded by light-coloured brick and soil. The slope irradiation for the system utilizing tilting to the optimum angle for each half of the year (at the summer and winter solstices) is calculated using the same method, using different values for the solar inclination and tilt angle for each half of the year. The optimum angles for each part of the year have been calculated using two methods, detailed in the appendices (18.3.2). The beam irradiation on the horizontal can be easily calculated using:

From this, equation 8 can be used to calculate the beam irradiation on a tilted surface:

Where: [ ]

The sloped diffuse irradiation is more complex to calculate as a result of its behaviour being more unpredictable. Since it is caused by the scattering of beam irradiance as it moves through particulates in the atmosphere, it is anisotropic in nature, moving independently in all directions. This makes it very difficult to calculate. Cited by Muneer are Moon and Spencer (1942) who used measured data to demonstrate the anisotropic nature of the luminance distribution of overcast skies. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

8-41

Muneer has developed a model (Saluja and Muneer, 1987) which has (for the sake of simplicity) been used here to obtain the slope diffuse irradiation; see (Muneer, et al., 2000, pp. 110-111) for more information on this subject. The reflected irradiation is then calculated using equation 10:

Finally, the 3 irradiation values are added to give the total slope irradiation at a given hour:

8.3.2

Tracking

The slope irradiation for the tracking system has been estimated using a different method. The first step is to calculate the angle of incidence and slope plane per hour. The tracking system being evaluated is rotated about a horizontal North-South axis, and adjusted continuously so that the direct solar beam makes the minimum angle of incidence with the modules at all times. The surface azimuth angle (ϒ) = +90° before noon and -90° after noon. First, the angle of the surface from horizontal is calculated at each hour. This can be calculated using the equations below. Before noon: [ After noon: [ ] ]

Next, the angle of incidence of the sun’s rays on the surface of the modules per hour is calculated: [ The hour angle is calculated using: [ ] ]

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

8-42 where the hour is the mid-point of the hour (i.e. 5.5 for the hour between 5am and 6am). The solar declination (δ) was found using Calc.4.10. Once the angle of incidence and tilt angle have been calculated per hour, the horizontal beam irradiation per hour must be calculated using:

From which the sloped beam irradiation can be calculated using:

At this stage, the sloped diffuse and reflected irradiation should be calculated, but due to the complexity of calculating these values accurately hour by hour, they have been estimated. The values for diffuse irradiation on the horizontal have been used, and the reflected irradiance was estimated by taking 10% of the sum of the beam and diffuse irradiation. The value of 10% was acquired by taking an average of the ratio of reflected to global irradiation calculated using Calc.4.10, which for the entire year was slightly over 10%. The final step is to calculate the slope irradiation per hour:

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8-43

8.4 Results
700 Daily Total Irradiance (Hslope, W/m2) 600 500 400 300 200 100 0 Tracking Seasonal Fixed

Month
Figure 32 – Total Daily Irradiation

As expected, the system utilising single-axis tracking
Fixed 119.91% 100.00% Seasonal

can capture more of the sun’s energy over the course of the year than the other two systems, although the increase is not as large as expected. Shown in figure 33, the single-axis system has access

102.10%

to 19.91% more irradiance than the fixed system,
Tracking

while the seasonal system only sees 2.1% more. The tracking system that has been proposed maximises the beam irradiance on the surface and allows the

Figure 33 – Total Annual Irradiance by %

beam irradiance to be felt much earlier in the day, so it is expected that in summer when there is a larger amount of beam irradiance it will capture much more energy than the other two systems. It is surprising that the seasonally tilted system is exposed to only marginally more irradiance than the fixed system, although this may be due to the relatively low percentage of annual irradiance which occurs in the summer in Spain. According to an article by Green Rhino Energy (Green Rhino Energy, 2011), seasonal tilting is most effective in areas where the majority of irradiance is experienced in the summer (e.g. Germany, where 75% is experienced between April and September). In Spain, summer irradiance only accounts for roughly 60% of the annual. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

8-44 Figure 34 shows the irradiance on each surface throughout the 15th of June. As expected, the singleaxis system outperforms both systems throughout the day, with the tilt allowing the irradiation to interact with the surface at a much earlier time of day.
1000 900 Slope irradiation (Islope, W/m2) 800 700 600 500 400 300 200 100 0 3.5 4.5 5.5 6.5 7.5 8.5 9.5 10.5 11.5 12.5 13.5 14.5 15.5 16.5 17.5 18.5 Time (24h) Fixed Seasonal Tracking

Figure 34 – Comparison of PV system slope irradiation - June

The maximum irradiance occurs between 11 and 12pm on all systems, with the fixed and seasonal systems exposed to around 850W/m2 and the single-axis system exposed to just over 900W/m2.
600 500 W/m2) 400 300 200 100 0 5.5 6.5 7.5 8.5 9.5 10.5 11.5 12.5 13.5 14.5 15.5 16.5 17.5 Hour (24h) Fixed Seasonal Tracking

Slope Irradiance (Islope,

Figure 35 – Comparison of PV system slope irradiation - December

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9-45 As expected, in December the difference is much less pronounced, with the main increase from the single axis system coming from its higher early morning exposure to irradiance. Shown in figure 35, the irradiance on the seasonal plane is actually higher than the tracking system; in reality, a properly designed tracking system will be at the optimum tilt angle for that day, and so will produce at-least the same as the seasonal adjustment system. This inaccuracy must be caused by an error in the calculations.

9 Panel Selection
As described in section 2.2.1, a number of panel types have been analysed. The most suitable type found are Sanyo HIT panels, which combine the high efficiency of mono-crystalline panels with the excellent high temperature performance of amorphous panels. The two main parameters looked at during selection are:  Wp – Watt-peak rating, the nominal power of the module at laboratory test conditions, in this case air mass of 1.5, irradiance = 800W/m2, air temperature = 20°C , wind speed 1 m/s and NOCT = 44°c.  Module and cell efficiency.

Sanyo offer two variety of HIT panel:   HIT-250E01 – 250Wp, 20.8% cell efficiency and 18.0 module efficiency HIT-245E01 – 245Wp, 20.4% cell efficiency and 17.7 module efficiency

The 250Wp panels have been selected, as there is limited roof-space available at the property, thus maximising module output and efficiency will be important to ensure the system covers as much of the properties electricity usage as possible. The data sheet for the selected panels can be found in the appendices (section 17.4).

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10-46

10 Power Output
10.1 Terms
Tcell – Cell-temperature under set conditions (K) Tc,NOCT – Cell-temperature at reference conditions (K) Ta – Ambient temperature (K) Gt – Slope Irradiance (W/m2) τ – Transmissivity of the module surface (No units, ratio) α – Absorptivity of the module surface (No units, ratio) ηm – Module efficiency at set conditions (No units, ratio) ηmp,ref – Maximum power point efficiency at reference conditions (No units, ratio) ηe – Efficiency of any power conditioning equipment (No units, ratio) μmp – Temperature co-efficient of MPPT efficiency (%/°c) Pi – Power output (W) Ac – Module area (m2)

10.2 Formulae
( ) ( )

Equation 17 – Cell Temperature at a given hour (Duffie & Beckham, 1991)

(

[

]

)

Equation 18 – Module efficiency if Tcell is above NOCT

(

[

]

)

Equation 19 – Module efficiency if Tcell is below NOCT

Equation 20 – Power output per module (Duffie & Beckham, 1991)

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10-47

10.3 Method
The power output of each of the systems has been calculated using the following method. First, the temperature of the PV cells at each hour must be calculated: ( ) ( )

With the cell temperature at each hour throughout the year, the efficiency of the modules at the conditions of that hour is calculated using: ( [ ] )

If the cell-temperature is above the NOCT (44°c) and: ( [ ] )

If the cell-temperature is below the NOCT. Finally, the power output per module for that hour is found by:

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10-48

10.4 Results
The total annual power output of each of the systems is shown below:    Fixed angle – 390.4kWh/module Seasonal adjustment – 397.51kWh/module Single-axis tracking – 467.19kWh/module
500 450 400 350 300 250 200 150 100 50 0 Fixed Seasonal Total Annual Output (kWh/module)
Figure 36 – PV System Total Annual Output

Tracking

As expected, the PV system utilizing single-axis tracking outperforms both other systems, producing 19.67% more energy than the fixed system. Somewhat surprisingly, the system using seasonal adjustments only produced 1.82% more energy per year than the fixed system. According to an online study (Green Rhino Energy, 2011) this is likely due to a relatively small fraction of Spain’s total annual irradiance occurring in summer.

Fixed Angle 119.67% 100.00% Seasonal Tilting Single Axis Tracking

101.82%

Figure 37 – Power output by %

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10-49 It can be seen that the difference between the powers generated by the systems is at its lowest point in the winter months, with only a minor amount of extra electricity generated using the tracking system. In the summer months, however, the difference becomes more pronounced, with the tracking system producing significantly more electricity than either the fixed or seasonal adjustment system. This is due to the height and motion of the sun in the summer months. In summer the sun rises earlier and has a larger range of motion in the sky, thus the benefits from a constantly optimised tilt are more pronounced.
Tracking 160 140 Monthly power output (kw/m2) 120 100 80 60 40 20 0 Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Figure 38 – Average monthly power output

Seasonal

Fixed

Due to the extremely minor increases in output by making use of seasonal adjustments, the remainder of this report will focus solely on the use of single-axis tracking and fixed arrays.

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11-50

11 System Sizing
The aim of the system is to provide 75% of the average monthly electricity requirement in March. The average monthly electricity used by the property is 827.17kWh, so the system must be capable of producing roughly 620kWh in March. The monthly power output in March per module of the fixed and tracking system is 34kWh and 39.5kWh, respectively.

And at 2.5Wp (Watt-peak) per module: ( )

(

)

So using tracking, to meet the electrical requirements of the property a 4.5kWp system will be required, using 18 modules. At a fixed slope the system would need to be 5.25kWp, which will be rounded to 4.5kWp, requiring 21 modules. In both cases, the systems will produce slightly less energy than is required, but adding another panel would add additional cost and produce a large amount of excess energy.

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12-51

12 System Performance
12.1 Assumptions
Now that the system sizes are known, the electricity output and financial performance of the systems can be calculated. For these calculations the following assumptions have been made:    A drop in power output of 1% per year. A 20 year system life-time. Hardware Cost: o o  Tracking – £14,150. Fixed - £16,500.

Mounts and wiring: o o Tracking - £5,660. Fixed - £3,300.

Installation: o o Tracking – £9,905. Fixed - £9,900.

Total Cost: o o Tracking - £29,715. Fixed - £29,700.

Feed-in tariff: o o Tracking (free-standing) – €0.32/kWh. Fixed (building integrated) – €0.34/kWh.

Maintenance costs (Jacobi & Starkweather, 2010): o o Tracking (free-standing) – €202.50/year. Fixed (free-standing) - €189/year.

   

Electricity cost of €0.18/kWh. Annual currency inflation of 2.5% (Trading Economics, 2012). Annual electricity price inflation of 3%. Due to sporadic occupancy patterns, income from selling excess electricity back to the grid has been neglected.

Details of the calculations can be found in the appendices (16.5 and 16.6). Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

12-52

12.2 Findings
It can be seen that in the summer months, the tracking system has a larger output, while the fixed system produces more electricity in the winter months. Over the life-time of the system, the tracking system produces slightly more electricity; 132515kWh compared to 129189.3kWh for the fixed, building integrated system.
Fixed 18000 16000 14000 Output (kWh) 12000 10000 8000 6000 4000 2000 0 Tracking

Figure 39 – Total 20-year electricity production

The total initial costs of the systems are also similar; despite fixed systems generally being cheaper in terms of hardware, installation and maintenance, the increase in size of the system to match the output of the tracking setup results in virtually identical initial outlay and only slightly reduced maintenance costs per year (€189 per year for the fixed system, €202.50 for the tracking system). The systems pay their initial costs back in a similar amount of time (tracking: 11.51 years, fixed: 10.93 years).
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Fixed
Figure 40 – System Payback (years)

Tracking

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13 Conclusions
 As a result of the Kt used being much lower than the actual, recorded value, it is likely that the diffuse irradiation values calculated are higher than they would be in real life as a result of less material in the atmosphere to scatter beam irradiation; this will also result in the beam irradiation likely being higher. 

According to an online study (Green Rhino Energy, 2011), the effectiveness of adjusting the tilt angle seasonally is dependent on the percentage of total annual irradiance which is felt in the summer; the higher the percentage of irradiance occurring in summer, the more effective such a system will be. They state that on average in Spain 60% of annual irradiance occurs in summer, which makes seasonal adjustments less effective than in Germany where summer irradiance accounts for 75% of the total. Figure 41 shows the percentage of irradiance occurring in summer and winter at the site, with 67.46% occurring in summer. This seems to contradict the online study, as the difference between the fixed and seasonally tilted system was only 2.1%. There may be other problems with the calculations leading to this discrepancy, as it is expected that the difference would be higher with this level of irradiance occurring in the summer.

32.54%

Summer

67.46%

Winter

Figure 41 - % of global irradiance occurring seasonally

Although fixed systems are generally seen as being cheaper than tracked, due to the increase in system size required to produce a relatively similar output, the costs are roughly the same. As a result of the increase in size, it seems one of the main factors in whether a tracked system should be used is if space is a concern, thus maximising output per m2 will be essential. Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

13-54  The fixed system will pay-back in a slightly shorter amount of time than the tracking system (10.93 vs 11.51 years), however due to the increase in energy output after the systems have paid back, a much higher profit will be generated through incentives using the tracked system, and a larger portion of the electricity demand will be provided. 

An area of 24.95m2 is required for the building-integrated, fixed system. With an available roof area of 30m2, this is potentially suitable. However, with the lack of space separating the panels, shading could become a problem, diminishing the output of the modules.

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14 Recommendations
The system recommended for installation on the site is a free-standing system utilizing single-axis tracking. In comparison to a building-integrated, fixed slope system, the tracking system will only cost marginally more to implement, but provide a much greater energy output throughout the lifetime of the system. Another reason for the implementation of the free-standing system is the potential for expansion. The area surrounding the site is populated by a large number of homes, populated largely by retirees. As a result of the increasing energy prices in Spain, the possibility of having access to a free and natural source of energy may be an attractive prospect to many. It may be a possibility to indicate to the nearby population the benefits of implementing such a system, with the aim of encouraging people to consider the possibility of a solar PV system to power their homes. In this way, the system could be expanded to provide power to a large number of nearby homes, decreasing the overall cost per installed kWp. For example, a 50kWp system could provide energy to roughly 11 homes, providing an income of roughly €65,000 per home over the life-time of the system, and costing in the region of €5000 per kWp, compared to €8000 for the smaller, single home system.

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15 Future Work
Future work to be considered:      Calculation of output from a system using dual-axis tracking, and comparison of that system with both the single-axis and fixed systems. Comparison of current system economic performance with the performance before the Spanish feed-in cuts. Calculation of CO2 savings as a result of the system. Comparison of the economic performance of the system with that of a similar system in a leading European solar nation. Design of a larger scale, 50kWp+ system to power a larger number of homes in the area.

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16 Appendices
16.1 Hourly Global Irradiation
First, the ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation is calculated:

[

]

[

]

Where: ω = hour from solar noon and ωs = Day-length For the purposes of this calculation, the day-length is taken at a set 12 hours while solar noon is taken as 12pm (midday). In reality (and in Calc.4.0.9), solar noon is the time of the day at which the sun is highest in the sky, and will vary throughout the year. For example, at 8am (4 hours from solar noon):
[ ] [ ]

[

]

[

]

So, at 8am with a 12 hour day-length, the ratio of hourly to daily global irradiation is 0.152:1. This allows the irradiation at that hour to be simply calculated from the daily global irradiation provided by NASA (Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012). For example, taking 2.05kW/m as the total global irradiation that day:
2

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16.2 Hourly Diffuse Irradiation
The first step in the calculations is to use equation 6 to calculate the extra-terrestrial irradiance on a given day. [ ]

For example, at between 12pm and 1pm on the 16th of January (day-number = 16 and Solar altitude = 30.8°): [ ]

With the extra-terrestrial irradiance calculated, Kt can be calculated using the ratio of global to extraterrestrial irradiance (equation 5):

The ratio of global to diffuse irradiance is then calculated (equation 4):

And finally, from re-arranging equation 4, the hourly diffuse irradiation is calculated:

Note that this differs slightly from the value computed using Calc4.0.8 (238W/m2) as the program does not round values to decimal points, giving a more accurate outcome.

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16.3 Hourly Slope Irradiation
16.3.1 Fixed and Seasonal Calculation Taking the hour between 12 and 1pm of January 16th (note θ and SOLALT must be in radians): * + [ ]

Ib, TLT can be calculated using:

Where:

The calculation for Id, TLT is not shown due to its complexity, but is given as 239 using the program provided by Muneer. The reflected irradiation on the tilted surface is then:
Figure 42 – Calc.4.10 (Muneer, et al., 2000)

At the optimum tilt angle of 34° and using an albedo of 0.6:

Finally, the slope irradiation is calculated for the hour:

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

16-60 16.3.2 Seasonal Optimum Tilt Two methods have been used to calculate the optimum tilt angle for each season. The first is a trial and error approach, using Calc.4.10 to find the optimum slope of each individual month. Note that taking an average of all 12 months yields a result of 34.08°, the same as the optimum annual tilt provided by PVGIS. The difference between that month’s optimum slope and the annual optimum of 34° is then calculated, with those months whose optimum tilt is above 34° benefitting from using the relatively high winter optimum tilt, and those months whose optimum is below 34° benefitting more from the lower summer tilt angle. Finally the optimum seasonal tilt is calculated by taking an average of the optimum tilt for each month that falls within that season. In this case, October to March is optimised for the winter angle (51°), while April to September is optimised for the summer tilt angle (14°). This information was backed up by using equations provided by MACS Lab (MACS Lab, Inc., 2012), which calculate the optimum tilt angles of each season for latitudes between 25° and 50° using:

Using this methods the calculated angles were 17° for summer and 52° for winter. By comparison, 17° provided more irradiation in summer, and 51° provided more in the winter, so these values have be used. 16.3.3 Tracking Again taking the hour between 12pm and 1pm on January 16th: First, the hour angle is calculated: [ Since it is after noon: [ ] ]

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[

]

The angle of incidence from the sun can then be calculated using: [ [ ] ]

Now that the angle of incidence is known for the hour, the horizontal beam irradiation is calculated using:

Using the angle of incidence and the beam irradiation, the beam irradiation on the tilted slope can be calculated using the value of solar altitude obtained from Calc4.10:

And lastly the slope irradiation can be calculated, with the value for

And:

[( [ ]

)

]

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16.4 Sanyo HIT-250E01 Data Sheet
This data sheet is provided courtesy of Sanyo (Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012).

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16.5 Power output
The power output of each of the systems has been calculated using the following method. First, the temperature of the PV cells at each hour must be calculated: ( ) ( )

With the cell temperature at each hour throughout the year, the efficiency of the modules at the conditions of that hour is calculated using: ( [ ] )

if the cell-temperature is above the NOCT (44°c) and: ( [ ] )

if the cell-temperature is below the NOCT. Finally, the power output per module for that hour is found by:

16.6 Economics
16.6.1 Hardware Cost The cost of the hardware for each system has been estimated using an online quote (Renewable Savings, 2012). This quote gives the price (£12,550) of a 4kWp system using Sanyo HIT-H250E01 (x16) panels, including inverters. The price of the system per module was calculated:

This cost was then added to the 4kWp system cost to get an estimate cost for each system:

[ [

] ]

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

16-65 As these values are only estimated, they were rounded up to £16,500 and £14,150 respectively. The cost of mounts and wiring was assumed at 20% of the initial hardware cost for the fixed system and 40% for the tracked system (due to the increased price of tracking mounts).

The cost of installation of the panels has been assumed at 50% of the total initial cost:

These values were then converted to euros at a rate of 1:1.203 (XE, 2012).

16.6.2 Maintenance Cost The next consideration was the cost of maintenance per year. An online document (Jacobi & Starkweather, 2010) was used to estimate the cost of maintenance per year for each system. O&M Costs ($/kW-year) Scheduled Maintenance/Cleaning Unscheduled Maintenance $2 $5 Fixed-tilt (c-Si) $20 Single-axis Tracking c-Si $30

Inverter Replacement

$10

$10

Subtotal Insurance, property taxes and owner’s cost Total

$32 $15

$45 $15

$47

$60

Table 2 – Operation and Maintenance Costs (Jacobi & Starkweather, 2010)

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

16-66 The data from table 2 was used to calculate the maintenance costs per year for each system.

These were then converted to euros at a rate of 1:0.7618 (XE, 2012).

16.6.3 Payback The income of the system was calculated next. This “income” takes into account the actual income from feed-in tariffs (€0.34/kWh for the fixed system, €0.32/kWh for the tracking system (Wikipedia, 2012)), the value of the electricity produced at €0.18/kWh (so the money saved in not grid-importing it (European Commission - Eurostat, 2011)), currency inflation at 2.5% per year (Trading Economics, 2012) and electricity cost inflation at 3% per year (assumed).

For the fixed system:

These values are calculated every year for 20 years, and the cumulative income over that time is noted. The year of pay-back can then be visually seen on the spread-sheet as the year in which the cumulative income surpasses the initial outlay, and is calculated more accurately by dividing the difference between the cumulative income of the payback year and the initial cost by the difference between the cumulative income of the payback year and the cumulative income the following year, and adding the answer to the payback year:

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17 References
Aldali, Y., Henderson, D. & Muneer, T., 2011. 50MW very large-scale photovoltaic powerplant for AlKufra, Lubya: energetic, economic and environmental impact analysis. International Journal of LowCarbon Technologies, 6(4), pp. 277-293. Cooke, D., 2007. Single vs Dual Axis Solar Tracking, s.l.: Altenergymag.com. Direct Industry, n.d. Photovoltaic Solar Cells. [Online] Available at: http://www.directindustry.com/industrial-manufacturer/photovoltaic-solar-cell80157.html [Accessed 2012]. Duffie, J. A. & Beckham, W. A., 1991. Solar Engineering of Thermal Processes. 2nd ed. s.l.:John Wiley & Sons, Inc.. EurObserv'ER, 2011. EurObserv'ER, Database. [Online] Available at: http://eurobserv-er.org/default.asp [Accessed 2012]. European Commission - Eurostat, 2011. Eurostat. [Online] Available at: http://epp.eurostat.ec.europa.eu/statistics_explained/index.php/Energy_price_statistics#Database [Accessed 2012]. European Commission, 2011. Energy, Publications, Statistics. [Online] Available at: http://ec.europa.eu/energy/publications/statistics/statistics_en.htm [Accessed 2012]. European Commission, 2012. Joint Research Centre. [Online] Available at: http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/jrc/index.cfm [Accessed 2012]. Google Inc., 2012. Google Maps. [Online] Available at: http://maps.google.co.uk/ [Accessed 2012]. Green Rhino Energy, 2011. Radiation on tilted surface. [Online] Available at: http://www.greenrhinoenergy.com/solar/radiation/tiltedsurface.php

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17-68 Institute for Energy and Transport (IET), 2012. PVGIS. [Online] Available at: http://re.jrc.ec.europa.eu/pvgis/ [Accessed 2012]. International Monetary Fund, 2012. Data and Statistics. [Online] Available at: http://www.imf.org/external/data.htm [Accessed 2012]. Jacobi, J. & Starkweather, R., 2010. Solar Photovoltaic Plant Operating and Maintenance Costs. [Online] Available at: http://www.scottmadden.com/insight/407/Solar-Photovoltaic-Plant-Operating-andMaintenance-Costs.html [Accessed 2012]. MACS Lab, Inc., 2012. Optimum Tilt of Solar Panels. [Online] Available at: http://www.macslab.com/optsolar.html [Accessed 2012]. McDermott, M., 2009. Treehugger, Solar Power Vocab: Single & Dual Axis Solar Trackers. [Online] Available at: http://www.treehugger.com/renewable-energy/solar-power-vocab-single-dual-axissolar-trackers.html [Accessed 2012]. Muneer, T., Kubie, J. & Abodahad, N., 2000. Windows in Buildings. 1st ed. s.l.:Architectural Press. Renewable Energy World, 2010. Spain's Solar Power Sector Falls into the Abyss. [Online] Available at: http://www.renewableenergyworld.com/rea/news/article/2010/11/spains-solarpower-sector-falls-into-the-abyss [Accessed 15 11 2012]. Renewable Savings, 2012. Solar PV Panels 4 kWp Sanyo HIT-H250E01 250 Wp 18% Module Efficiency. [Online] Available at: http://www.renewablesavings.co.uk/ProductInfo.aspx?id=349 [Accessed 2012]. Sanyo Electric Co., Ltd., 2012. Sanyo HIT Technology. [Online] Available at: http://us.sanyo.com/Solar/SANYO-HIT-Technology [Accessed 11 2011].

Ben Preston Edinburgh Napier University

17-69 Scheuten Solar, 2007. References, Olmedilla Cuenca. [Online] Available at: http://www.scheutensolar.com/public/site/uploads/producten/calzadaolmedilla_web3.jpg [Accessed 2012]. Scientific American, 2008. Is the Sun Setting on Solar Power in Spain?. [Online] Available at: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=is-the-sun-setting-on-solar-powerin-spain [Accessed 2012]. Solar Edge, 2010. Sheding light on PV system shading. [Online] Available at: http://www.solaredge.com/articles/pv-system-shading Solar Energy at Home, n.d. Solar Cell Energy Basics. [Online] Available at: http://www.solar-energy-at-home.com/solar-cell.html [Accessed 2012]. Solar Novus Today, 2009. Study: Southern Europe Photovoltaic Market to Help Global Industry Back to Growth. [Online] Available at: http://www.solarnovus.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=241:study-southerneurope-photovoltaic-markets-to-help-global-industry-back-to-growth-&catid=37:businessnews&Itemid=241 [Accessed 2012]. Spain-Meteo, 1983-2005. Clear Sky Insolation Clearness Index. [Online] Available at: http://spain-meteo.ru/en/mursiya/years/clear-sky-insolation-index [Accessed 2012]. Trading Economics, 2012. Euro area inflation rate. [Online] Available at: http://www.tradingeconomics.com/euro-area/inflation-cpi [Accessed 2012]. Tutiempo, 1973 to 2012. Tutiempo, Historical Climate Data. [Online] Available at: http://www.tutiempo.net/en/Climate/Murcia_San_Javier/84330.htm [Accessed 2012]. W.B. Stine, R. H., 1986. Solar Energy Systems Design. s.l.:John wiley and Sons, Inc.

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18-70 Wattsun, 2010. Tracked vs Fixed: PV System Cost and AC Power Production Comparison, Madison, WI: s.n. Wikipedia, 2012. Feed-in Tariff. [Online] Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Feed-in_tariff#Spain [Accessed 2012]. XE, 2012. Currency Converter. [Online] Available at: http://www.xe.com/ucc/

18 Bibliography
Muneer, T., Kubie, J. & Abodahad, N., 2000. Windows in Buildings. 1st ed. s.l.:Architectural Press. Muneer, T., 2004. Solar Radiation and Daylight Models. 2nd ed: Elsevier Butterworth Heinemann. Markvart, T., 2000. Solar Electricity. 2nd ed: John Wiley and sons, Inc. W.B. Stine, R. H., 1986. Solar Energy Systems Design. s.l.:John wiley and Sons, Inc. Duffie, J. A. & Beckham, W. A., 1991. Solar Engineering of Thermal Processes. 2nd ed. s.l.:John Wiley & Sons, Inc..

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