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Large-Scale Bifacial PV Test Field Performance Compared to Simulations Using Commercially Available Software, Research-Based and Open Source Tools
N. Riedel-Lyngskær, D. Berrian, D. Alvarez Mira, A.A. Protti, S. Thorsteinsson, P.B. Poulsen, J. Libal, J. Vedde
PV Systems and Storage – Modelling, Design, Operation and Performance
Subtopic: Design and Installation of PV Systems
Event: 37th European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition
Session: 5CO.10.4
1324 - 1329
ISBN: 3-936338-73-6
Paper DOI: 10.4229/EUPVSEC20202020-5CO.10.4
0,00 EUR
Document(s): paper, presentation


The aim of this work is to provide the photovoltaic (PV) community with a validation study of eight tools used to simulate bifacial PV performance. We simulate real 26 kWp bifacial p-PERC arrays located within a 420 kWp site located in Northern Europe (55.6°N, 12.1°E). The substructures investigated include horizontal single axis trackers (HSATs) and fixed tilt racks that have dimensions analogous to those found in utility-scale PV installations. Each bifacial system has a monofacial reference system with similar front side power. We use on-site solar radiation (global, diffuse and beam) and albedo measurements from spectrally flat class A sensors as inputs to the simulation tools, and compare modeled values to field measurements of string level DC power and rear plane of array irradiance. Our results show that state-ofthe-art bifacial performance models add ~0.5% uncertainty to the PV modeling chain. For the site investigated, 2D view factor fixed tilt simulations are within ±1 % of measured monthly bifacial gain. However, simulations of single axis tracker systems are less accurate, wherein 2D view factor and 3D ray tracing are within approximately 2% and 1% of measured bifacial gain, respectively.