At Kipp & Zonen we receive a lot of questions from customers wanting to know about measuring solar irradiance for PV projects. This could be for solar resource mapping or site prospecting; or in the design, construction or operational phases of a power plant. What monitoring equipment should they buy?
Kipp & Zonen receives a lot of questions about whether a particular data logger is suitable for use with our instruments. These are mainly from the solar energy sector, where users are less familiar with the signal output than in meteorology and climate research. Let me share my experiences on dataloggers to you.
I will concentrate on our CMP series pyranometers for measuring global and diffuse horizontal irradiance (GHI and DHI) and plane of array (POA) irradiance. However, similar considerations apply to the CHP1 pyrheliometer for measuring direct normal irradiance (DNI).
On the morning of Tuesday April 10th I noticed a thin layer of sand on my car. As I was driving to the office I heard the news bulletin mention that the beautiful sun rise was due to Sahara sand in the air. This made me realize that we might have a real soiling event in Delft!
This week was a milestone; all-new smart UV sensors SUV-A, SUV-B and SUV-E have been sent out to customers. The instruments are born and now available to deliver from stock.
After more than 15 years of setting the standard in UV measurements, our well-known UVS series of radiometers have been replaced with a new generation smarter than alternatives. The new SUV range has dedicated models to measure UVA, UVB and UVE (UV Index) with the latest detector technology, digital signal processing and Modbus® output.
One month ago, on valentine’s day, I got up at 4 in the morning. Not to surprise my wife with a breakfast but to catch a flight to Marrakesh in Morocco to visit the Green Energy Park of IRESEN (Research Institute for Solar Energy and New Energies). With me I brought two new DustIQ’s PV soiling monitoring systems for testing by Dr. Ahmed Alami Merrouni at this excellent site.
I’ve just returned from Spain where I installed a new test setup for DustIQ at Plataforma Solar de Almeria (PSA). This solar research site is located in the Tabernas Desert, 30 km from Almeria and is a perfect location to challenge our DustIQ to a dusty environment.
Last week, I went to the PV Operations conference in Munich, organised by NewEnergyUpdate. Besides pleasant talks with attendees during the networking breaks, I had the opportunity to speak about the importance of irradiance and soiling measurements for utility solar plants.
Measuring dust and soiling ratio is a new field of science. There are many opinions about it, but there is no large history of data and experience in measurements. Although the spot measurement of DustIQ is very precise, it is wise to do interpretation and use common sense when extrapolating the measurement value to the whole PV plant, or a part of it, for decision making. The DustIQ measurement value is true, but the question is whether this value is representative for the whole PV park.
When I was in the middle of preparations for field tests of DustIQ, Solarplaza published the whitepaper ‘Soiling - origins, measurements, analysis & solutions’. A subject that is the focus of a large team of Kipp & Zonen colleagues at the moment, soiling. It’s nice to see that we are not the only ones researching this matter!
When I was doing research on satellite derived irradiance data I spoke to more than just my colleagues at Kipp & Zonen and providers of satellite data; I also contacted other stakeholders in the solar energy industry. And that is when I came across different myths that were going around in the industry. Here’s my list of the top myths on the subject of satellite and pyranometer measurements that I would like to dispel.