US scientists claim clear-sky irradiance model provides better results for module testing


From pv magazine International

An international research team coordinated by the American Institute of Physics claims to have successfully applied the clear-sky methodology developed by the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), to obtain a more accurate assessment of solar module performance.

According to findings presented in the paper Reliable long-term performance assessment of commercial photovoltaic modules tested under field conditions over 5 years, published in the Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy, the open-source, clear-sky methodology – which helps determine solar irradiance at a location in ideal, clear-sky conditions – is a very efficient tool to evaluate the aging of PV technology under field conditions when combined with real-world data. Such extra information is commonly provided by pyranometers, a type of actinometer used for measuring solar irradiance on a planar surface. Pyranometers, said the Institute of Physics team, are often a source of errors and malfunctions but integration with the clear-sky methodology could help reduce inaccuracy.

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