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Performance of photovoltaic systems on non-domestic buildings (FB 60)

Performance of photovoltaic systems on non-domestic buildings (FB 60)

by Steve Pester and Frances Crick (31-Oct-2013)


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Book Description

This report provides information on the design and operational factors affecting the performance of photovoltaic (PV) systems on non-domestic buildings. It is aimed at decision makers, developers, architects and engineers involved during the conceptual stages of PV projects on buildings, and will inform system design decisions at the earliest stages. The report uses monitoring data from real buildings and recent research. It focuses on commercial systems but also draws on experience in the domestic sector. Appendices contain background information on PV for those in the building industry with limited knowledge of the technology and its use in building systems. The report does not aim to be a design tool, but provides key information for use in developing a PV building project in order to help maximise energy generation performance. It reviews the background to PV systems, performance measurement, their use in buildings, including building integration methods, performance design choices and operational issues affecting performance as well as system costs and carbon savings.


Executive summary

1 Introduction

  • -Background to PV systems
  • -Defining the performance of PV systems

Predicting the performance of PV systems: simulation programs

2 Location and building factors

  • -Geographic location
  • -Mounting and building design options

3 PV module characteristics

  • -PV materials-Selecting modules for a project

4 System design and installation factors

  • -Common design issues-Installation and commissioning

5 Operational factors

  • -Soiling and shading during operation
  • -Grid interaction-Inverter breakdowns
  • -System monitoring and user interface

6 Summary of factors that affect PV performance

7 Performance data and case studies

  • -Summary of LSFT performance data
  • -Is the performance of PV systems improving?
  • -Case studies

8 Summary of lessons learned

9 PV system costs, feed-in tariffs and carbon savings

  • -Historical system costs
  • -Feed-in tariffs
  • -Energy payback and carbon savings

Appendix A: PV materials and performance - further information
Appendix B: Building-integrated mounting methods
Appendix C: Testing and certificationReferences 

A4, 62pp, 21 line drawings, 21 photos

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