This paper reviews the results of 3 years of research and development in optimizing solar project internal rate of return (IRR) through various solar mounting strategies, including fixed-mount, single-axis, and dual-axis tracking. Various tracking algorithms are explored. The results of the research show that shadowing from adjacent photovoltaic (PV) arrays, as well as horizon clouds, significantly impact power output in traditional mounting architectures, but that innovative tracking algorithms and array shape can reduce the negative impact of shadowing. These innovations produce greater power output while reducing project costs and substantially increasing project IRR.
Advanced Dual-Axis Backtracking Improves Output While Reducing Project Costs—Technology That Produces the Best Project Internal Rate of Return in the Solar Industry
Rocklin, CA 95765
Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the Journal of Solar Energy Engineering. Manuscript received June 9, 2012; final manuscript received December 21, 2012; published online March 22, 2013. Assoc. Editor: Santiago Silvestre.
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Oosting, K. W., Green, J. E., Rutherford, R., Snook, A. J., and Keele, D. (April 8, 2013). "Advanced Dual-Axis Backtracking Improves Output While Reducing Project Costs—Technology That Produces the Best Project Internal Rate of Return in the Solar Industry." ASME. J. Sol. Energy Eng. May 2013; 135(2): 021017. https://doi.org/10.1115/1.4023439
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