Technoeconomic Analysis of Changing PV System Layout and Convection Heat Transfer

Matthew Prilliman, Sarah Smith, Brooke Stanislawski, Marc Calaf, Raul Cal, Tim Silverman, Janine Keith

Research output: NRELPoster


This work includes analysis of potential economic improvements for PV systems for changing system parameters such as ground coverage ratio that alter the convective cooling consideration on PV modules through a newly proposed convective curve fit. Accounting for the spatial layout of the system in the convection heat transfer calculations allows for more accuracy in convective cooling load and subsequent module temperature calculations. The changing heat transfer considerations can be shown to improve system LCOE along with improved incident irradiance from increased row spacing despite the additional system costs incurred with increased module spacing. State-level analyses show that the impact of decreasing system GCR is greatest for climates with cold average annual ambient temperatures and moderate to high average annual wind speeds. Further waterfall analysis of changing system parameters reveals that the changing heat transfer dynamics have a non-negligible impact on system LCOE when compared to the changes in incident irradiance that serve as the primary driver of annual energy performance changes.
Original languageAmerican English
StatePublished - 2022

Publication series

NamePresented at the PV Performance Modeling and Monitoring Workshop, 23-24 August 2022, Salt Lake City, Utah

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/PO-7A40-83655


  • heat transfer
  • PV
  • System Advisor Model
  • technoeconomic analysis


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