Solar Installation Calculation Software

aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
Hello,

Please help in finding the best software for solar installation calculation with great accuracy....................

Comments

  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,768 admin
    My first question is "why"?

    More or less, the accuracy of your own measurements (outside of using laboratory grade measurement equipment) is +/- 10% accuracy.

    And, long term yearly average, year to year 10% variation is the norm. And if you are near the coast, variations from year to year are probably much larger than 10%.

    And then there is the usage of power by the average human/family... 30% variation in usage patterns between days, and seasonal variations can be huge (refrigeration, lighting, fans, use of energy for work/schooling/etc.).

    If you are trying to build a utility size solar farm--Having higher accuracy is helpful for budgeting/return on investment/performance analysis--But you still have the day to day/seasonal/yearly weather patterns to deal with.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    Thanks for your valuable answer
    I am looking for a software which i can use in calculation of irradiation, losses because of obstacle ,shadows information etc.
  • tupuletupule Banned Posts: 2
    I have seen some forum - PVsys or something like that, there was a software to do it, but it was really expensive :(
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    I heard about a Software called "Archelios PRO" , is that any one know about this ?
    Please Respond
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,768 admin
    I don't know what people use currently (with the advent of smart phones), but this was a very common tool for shading analysis in years past:

    http://www.solarpathfinder.com/PF

    Not cheap, but is a one time charge.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    Thanks BB
    So, Archelios is best for shading analysis but i think it is also used for calculating irradiation production details and Horizon mask etc.
    What you say ?


  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    I want to know about a PV Sizing Software called "Archelios PRO" i heard that it is best in terms of Production Simulation Result as per IJEEE & Photon International Study , so please find some more about this software and if you get any valuable thing about Archelios please tell me...................
    Thank You
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,768 admin
    I would suggest passing on Achrelios. It is too expensive (yearly fees)--Just use www.sketchup.com (or similar software) instead.

    If you are analyzing for shading from buildings/structures on a solar array--It is probably a less than ideal setup for solar. Besides loss of power due to shading, solar panels can be damaged by shading too with string array systems. Even though solar panels are supposed to have bypass diodes to protect against shading--those diodes (in my humble opinion) are a weak point for solar panels (diodes in conduction generate heat--Hot/glass+plastic solar panels and plastic junction boxes are poor at dissipating heat from the diodes).

    So--I would have a difficult time seeing how Achrelios Pro could have any sort of useful payback over a standard shadow predicting software package that helps you to eliminate shading during the middle of the day.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    Very Very thanks to You Bill, but i think it's cost is very less compared to other commercial software package and there is plugin inside this software so we can use sketch up with this software , the only thing i want to know about this is that people are using this software, and what is there feedback on production simulation result as compared to other commercial software package, because i want to try this software but on Archelios PRO site i found only trial version and it is showing that the "trial version data is not real " that's why i am confused but i have seen that it is a good tool for near mask calculation, Financial Analysis and we can use off Grid Simulation as well ..............


    Aanduwokus
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,768 admin
    I will give this quote:
    Prediction is very difficult, especially if it's about the future.
    Niels Bohr
    Long term solar variations are easily in the 10% to 20% year over year averages (one Standard Deviation--guessing on my part)... And if you live near the coast (marine layer)--Your variations can be 50% or more.

    Anyone that setups a financial model that fails if the output is 10% less than predicted (year over year)--Then the assumptions are not financially supportable.

    https://www.greentechmedia.com/artic...ity-production
    The Mojave Desert plant, built with the aid of a $1.6 billion federal loan guarantee, kicked off commercial operation at the tail end of December 2013, and for the eight-month period from January through August, its three units generated 254,263 megawatt-hours of electricity, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration data. That’s roughly one-quarter of the annual 1 million-plus megawatt-hours that had been anticipated. Output did pick up in the typically sunny months of May, June, July and August, as one might expect, with 189,156 MWh generated in that four-month period. But even that higher production rate would translate to annual electricity output of less than 600,000 MWh, at least 40 percent below target.
    This plant, apparently, had a whole bunch of sales reps, engineers, and MBAs lying to each other to get funding. So far, their "best guess" modeling has been off by a factor of ~1/2-1/4x (60% to 25% of "predicted" energy production so far).

    Anyone that is selling their modeling software based on accuracy of predictions--They are just telling you (and your MBAs) what they want to hear. And when the project fails to meet predictions--They will tell you it was "bad luck".

    I don't know if you are looking at this from an engineering or a financial point of view (predicting the future)--I would suggest that you get a daily data set that is (typically) 30-50 years long and run some standard statistical software (spread sheet) calculations. Get some Standard Deviations numbers (and average, median, etc.) numbers and feed that back through the financial model.

    You (or somebody) needs to understand the stability of the financial model (let alone the stability of the engineering solution)--If you get a 50% predicted output over one day, one month, one year--What does that do to the financing--If, for example, 50% of predicted output over one month is enough to put your payments (and/or production guarantees) in default--Then solar power is not where you want to put your money.

    Any decent modeling package can give you 10% accuracy with a fixed solar irradiation model/set of assumption (i.e., based on sun position, shading, etc.)... However, making decisions that assume 10% or 1% accuracy (~1% accuracy is typical lab grade ground based measurement accuracy--from a quick Google search) from the modeling software when overlaid with a high possibility of 50% variation (one chance in every few years) in actual weather related solar insolation over a monthly period--We are kidding/lying to ourselves.

    Your thoughts?

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    BB. wrote: »
    I will give this quote:

    Long term solar variations are easily in the 10% to 20% year over year averages (one Standard Deviation--guessing on my part)... And if you live near the coast (marine layer)--Your variations can be 50% or more.

    Anyone that setups a financial model that fails if the output is 10% less than predicted (year over year)--Then the assumptions are not financially supportable.

    https://www.greentechmedia.com/artic...ity-production


    This plant, apparently, had a whole bunch of sales reps, engineers, and MBAs lying to each other to get funding. So far, their "best guess" modeling has been off by a factor of ~1/2-1/4x (60% to 25% of "predicted" energy production so far).

    Anyone that is selling their modeling software based on accuracy of predictions--They are just telling you (and your MBAs) what they want to hear. And when the project fails to meet predictions--They will tell you it was "bad luck".

    I don't know if you are looking at this from an engineering or a financial point of view (predicting the future)--I would suggest that you get a daily data set that is (typically) 30-50 years long and run some standard statistical software (spread sheet) calculations. Get some Standard Deviations numbers (and average, median, etc.) numbers and feed that back through the financial model.

    You (or somebody) needs to understand the stability of the financial model (let alone the stability of the engineering solution)--If you get a 50% predicted output over one day, one month, one year--What does that do to the financing--If, for example, 50% of predicted output over one month is enough to put your payments (and/or production guarantees) in default--Then solar power is not where you want to put your money.

    Any decent modeling package can give you 10% accuracy with a fixed solar irradiation model/set of assumption (i.e., based on sun position, shading, etc.)... However, making decisions that assume 10% or 1% accuracy (~1% accuracy is typical lab grade ground based measurement accuracy--from a quick Google search) from the modeling software when overlaid with a high possibility of 50% variation (one chance in every few years) in actual weather related solar insolation over a monthly period--We are kidding/lying to ourselves.

    Your thoughts?

    -Bill

    Thanks BB, But it might be good tool because i have not yet tried it so first i think be sure about any new thing then only we can say either it is good or bad ..
  • BB.BB. Super Moderators, Administrators Posts: 28,768 admin
    But what is "good"? How accurate can the modeling be when the "noise" in daily life is many times the "accuracy" of the model.

    -Bill
    Near San Francisco California: 3.5kWatt Grid Tied Solar power system+small backup genset
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
    BB. wrote: »
    But what is "good"? How accurate can the modeling be when the "noise" in daily life is many times the "accuracy" of the model.

    -Bill

    No, I am Comparing it with other commercially available PV Software "Archelios PRO" might be good tool i have seen some demos on you tube , if you have any knowledge of this software please tell me ...............
  • aanduwokusaanduwokus Registered Users Posts: 9
     :) 

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