Understanding Inter-Annual Variability of PV Energy Production in the Contiguous United States

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2 Scopus Citations

Abstract

Year-to-year variability of photovoltaic (PV) generation is an important factor for project financing as well as for modeling the reliability and resource adequacy of power systems. In this work, we analyze inter-annual variability of PV generation across the contiguous United States using the National Solar Radiation Database (NSRDB) from 1998 to 2014. We compare the estimated PV generation from the typical meteorological year (TMY) against the long-term mean, and find that on average the TMY tends to overpredict estimated PV production. However, we also found significant regional bias and spatial clustering in that comparison, such that there are many regional pockets of underprediction as well. Finally, we show that there is not a single year of data that most closely approximates a representative 'resource year' for all regions of the United States. These results point to the need to understand inter-annual variability at individual sites and to be aware of the shortcomings of using TMY or a single year of data for project or grid modeling.

Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages4
DOIs
StatePublished - 17 Aug 2018
Event2018 International Conference on Probabilistic Methods Applied to Power Systems, PMAPS 2018 - Boise, United States
Duration: 24 Jun 201828 Jun 2018

Conference

Conference2018 International Conference on Probabilistic Methods Applied to Power Systems, PMAPS 2018
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityBoise
Period24/06/1828/06/18

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-6A20-70726

Keywords

  • Capacity Value
  • Long-term Variability
  • National Solar Radiation Database
  • Probability Exceedance
  • PV

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