Task 46 - Solar Resource Assessment and Forecasting


Best Practices Handbook for the Collection and Use of Solar Resource Data for Solar Energy Applications
February 2015 - PDF 4.79MB
By: M. Sengupta, 1 A. Habte,1 S. Kurtz, A. Dobos, S Wilbert, E. Lorenz, T. Stoffel, D. Renné, D. Myers, S. Wilcox, P. Blanc, and R. Perez
The first version of this handbook was developed in response to a growing need by the solar energy industry for a single document addressing the key aspects of solar resource characterization. The solar energy industry has developed rapidly throughout the last few years, and there have been significant enhancements in the body of knowledge in the areas of solar resource assessment and forecasting. Thus, this second version of the handbook was developed from the need to update and enhance the initial version and present the state of the art in a condensed form for all of its users. Although the first version of this handbook was developed by only researchers from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, this version has additional contributions from an international group of experts primarily from the knowledge that has been gained through participation in the International Energy Agency’s Solar Heating and Cooling Programme Task 36 and Task 46. As in the first version, this material was assembled by scientists and engineers who have many decades of combined experience in atmospheric science, radiometry, meteorological data processing, and renewable energy technology development. Readers are encouraged to provide feedback to the authors for future revisions and an expansion of the handbook’s scope and content.
Best Practices Handbook for the Collection and Use of Solar Resource Data for Solar Energy Applications
Task 46 Highlights 2014
February 2015 - PDF 1.02MB
Knowledge of solar energy resources is critical when designing, building and operating successful solar water heating systems, concentrating solar power systems, and photovoltaic systems. However, due to their dependence on weather phenomena the energy output from these technologies can be highly variable, especially in situations where storage is not available to smooth out this variability. Accurate solar resource assessment and reliable solar power forecasting are important tools not only for system design, but also for system operators in matching loads at any given time with the solar energy technologies available. Reliable solar data and data products are essential for optimizing the value of these technologies in meeting clean energy goals and lowering the overall cost of energy.
Task 46 Highlights 2014
How Recent Advances in Solar Resource Assessment Support Large-Scale Solar Development
October 2014 - PDF 1.29MB
By: David Renné
Presentation at SHC 2014
How Recent Advances in Solar Resource Assessment Support Large-Scale Solar Development
Task 46 Highlights 2013
Solar Resource Assessment and Forecasting
February 2014 - PDF 0.35MB
Knowledge of solar energy resources is critical when designing, building and operating successful solar water heating systems, concentrating solar power systems, and photovoltaic systems. However, due to their dependence on weather phenomena the energy output from these technologies can be highly variable, especially in situations where storage is not available to smooth out this variability. Accurate solar resource assessment and reliable solar power forecasting are important tools not only for system design, but also for system operators in matching loads at any given time with the solar energy technologies available. Reliable solar data and data products are essential for optimizing the value of these technologies in meeting clean energy goals and lowering the overall cost of energy.
Task 46 Highlights 2013
Task 46 Highlights 2012
January 2013 - PDF 0.23MB
Knowledge of solar energy resources is critical when designing, building and operating successful solar water heating systems, concentrating solar power systems, and photovoltaic systems. However, due to their dependence on weather phenomena the energy output from these technologies can be highly variable, especially in situations where storage is not available to smooth out this variability. High penetrations of these technologies will then require utilities to be able to predict their availability to meet varying load demands. Solar resource and solar power forecasting is an important tool being made available to system operators to assist them in matching load fluctuations with the solar energy technologies available to them, thereby optimizing the value of these technologies in meeting clean energy goals.
Solar Dataset
United Nations Environmental Programme
October 2011
The United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) is hosting an online guide that ISES developed together with UNEP and partners from the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), the U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and the State University of New York at Albany. This guide helps users make an educated decision when deciding which solar dataset to use for a specific application and/or at a specific location. Knowledge of solar energy resources is essential for the planning and operation of solar energy systems. Different organisations provide several autonomous solar data covering various spatial and temporal periods with various resolutions. Solar data sets differ in spatial and temporal resolution, time period covered, and methodology used. Some of these datasets are available for free, while some are not, and they all may provide varying results. As a result, most users cannot verify the suitability of a given solar dataset or map for a specific application. This can lead users to abandon their search or make non-appropriate use of the information. This simple guide tool was developed to help alleviate this problem. The online user-friendly guide helps expert and non-expert users to decide which solar resource data sets are the most appropriate depending on a type of application that the user is interested in and the location. The programme relates information back to two information tables: one related to a compilation of a selection of existing satellite based solar datasets and their metadata and the other defines specific requirements a dataset should meet for specific solar application.