Solar and Storage Techno-Economic Analysis Tutorial for the IEEE Photovoltaic Specialist Conference (PVSC)

Research output: NRELPresentation


This tutorial will highlight the most recent efforts from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) to track solar photovoltaic (PV) technology trends and manufacturing costs, project levelized cost of electricity (LCOE), and project levelized cost of solar plus storage (LCOSS) for systems across the globe. We will begin with an overview of the global PV supply chain and 2021 benchmark input data for NREL's crystalline silicon (c-Si) and thin film PV module manufacturing cost models. The framework that we follow and will review during this tutorial provides a methodology to prepare bottom-up manufacturing cost models including the items within the U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) and the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS). For the polysilicon, wafer, cell conversion, and module assembly steps of the c-Si supply chain, and for thin film modules, we will review input data and methods useful for calculating the costs of goods sold (COGS); research and development (R&D) expenses; and sales, general, and business administration (S, G, &A) expenses. This 2021 benchmark analysis is compiled for state-of-the-art c-Si and thin film module manufacturing. We will also review methods for our 2021 system benchmark costs calculations and LCOE technoeconomic analysis of PV systems and solar plus storage systems. Next generation technologies that lower PV manufacturing and installation costs, reduce operations and maintenance (O&M) expenses, and improve system energy yield will also be highlighted. Techniques for comparing LCOE performance will also be reviewed. We look forward to sharing NREL's extensive work in these areas and discussing ideas for future directions.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages85
StatePublished - 2022

Publication series

NamePresented at the 49th IEEE Photovoltaic Specialists Conference (PVSC 49), 5-10 June 2022, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PR-7A40-82956


  • cost models
  • economics
  • LCOE
  • solar


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