ZHAW validates yield calculations for alpine solar systems

Winterthur – Researchers at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW) have tested the calculations of the PVSyst software for the yield of alpine solar systems using a test system. As a result, the simulation tends to underestimate the yields.

Researchers at the ZHAW have checked the accuracy of the PVSyst software's calculations on the yield of alpine solar systems. The Swiss Federal Office of Energy recommends this software as part of the expansion of alpine solar plants, explains the ZHAW in a corresponding press release. The results of the research showed "that the approach proposed by the federal government makes sense and that the yields tend to be underestimated", the press release states.

For the validation, the ZHAW researchers carried out a large number of measurements on the Totalp in Davos GR in the winter half-year 2023/24 using a flexible multi-row miniature system. The measurement data largely corresponded with data collected at the same time from the existing test facility at the same location. In contrast, the yields calculated using the PVSyst simulation tended to be lower across the board.

The researchers attribute this to the albedo values from Meteonorm used by the software. The albedo is a value for the proportion of sunlight reflected from the ground. At the same time, the research was able to show that back-side irradiation on a bifacial solar panel increases the yield by around 25 to 35 percent. ce/hs

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