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Incorporation of NREL Solar Advisor Model Photovoltaic Capabilities with GridLAB-D

Description: This report provides a summary of the work updating the photovoltaic model inside GridLAB-D. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory Solar Advisor Model (SAM) was utilized as a basis for algorithms and validation of the new implementation. Subsequent testing revealed that the two implementations are nearly identical in both solar impacts and power output levels. This synergized model aides the system-level impact studies of GridLAB-D, but also allows more specific details of a particular site to be explored via the SAM software.
Date: October 19, 2012
Creator: Tuffner, Francis K.; Hammerstrom, Janelle L. & Singh, Ruchi
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Solar Advisor Model User Guide for Version 2.0

Description: The Solar Advisor Model (SAM) provides a consistent framework for analyzing and comparing power system costs and performance across the range of solar technologies and markets, from photovoltaic systems for residential and commercial markets to concentrating solar power and large photovoltaic systems for utility markets. This manual describes Version 2.0 of the software, which can model photovoltaic and concentrating solar power technologies for electric applications for several markets. The current version of the Solar Advisor Model does not model solar heating and lighting technologies.
Date: August 1, 2008
Creator: Gilman, P.; Blair, N.; Mehos, M.; Christensen, C.; Janzou, S. & Cameron, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Detailed Physical Trough Model for NREL's Solar Advisor Model: Preprint

Description: Solar Advisor Model (SAM) is a free software package made available by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Sandia National Laboratory, and the US Department of Energy. SAM contains hourly system performance and economic models for concentrating solar power (CSP) systems, photovoltaic, solar hot-water, and generic fuel-use technologies. Versions of SAM prior to 2010 included only the parabolic trough model based on Excelergy. This model uses top-level empirical performance curves to characterize plant behavior, and thus is limited in predictive capability for new technologies or component configurations. To address this and other functionality challenges, a new trough model; derived from physical first principles was commissioned to supplement the Excelergy-based empirical model. This new 'physical model' approaches the task of characterizing the performance of the whole parabolic trough plant by replacing empirical curve-fit relationships with more detailed calculations where practical. The resulting model matches the annual performance of the SAM empirical model (which has been previously verified with plant data) while maintaining run-times compatible with parametric analysis, adding additional flexibility in modeled system configurations, and providing more detailed performance calculations in the solar field, power block, piping, and storage subsystems.
Date: October 1, 2010
Creator: Wagner, M. J.; Blair, N. & Dobos, A.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Modeling Photovoltaic and Concentrating Solar Power Trough Performance, Cost, and Financing with the Solar Advisor Model: Preprint

Description: A comprehensive solar technology systems analysis model, the Solar Advisor Model (SAM), has been developed to support the federal R&D community and the solar industry by staff at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and Sandia National Laboratory. This model is able to model the finances, incentives, and performance of flat-plate photovoltaic (PV), concentrating PV, and concentrating solar power (specifically, parabolic troughs). The primary function of the model is to allow users to investigate the impact of variations in performance, cost, and financial parameters to better understand their impact on key figures of merit. Figures of merit related to the cost and performance of these systems include, but aren't limited to, system output, system efficiencies, levelized cost of energy, return on investment, and system capital and O&M costs. There are several models within SAM to model the performance of photovoltaic modules and inverters. This paper presents an overview of each PV and inverter model, introduces a new generic model, and briefly discusses the concentrating solar power (CSP) parabolic trough model. A comparison of results using the different PV and inverter models is also presented.
Date: May 1, 2008
Creator: Blair, N.; Mehos, M.; Christensen, C. & Cameron, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Technical Manual for the SAM Physical Trough Model

Description: NREL, in conjunction with Sandia National Lab and the U.S Department of Energy, developed the System Advisor Model (SAM) analysis tool for renewable energy system performance and economic analysis. This paper documents the technical background and engineering formulation for one of SAM's two parabolic trough system models in SAM. The Physical Trough model calculates performance relationships based on physical first principles where possible, allowing the modeler to predict electricity production for a wider range of component geometries than is possible in the Empirical Trough model. This document describes the major parabolic trough plant subsystems in detail including the solar field, power block, thermal storage, piping, auxiliary heating, and control systems. This model makes use of both existing subsystem performance modeling approaches, and new approaches developed specifically for SAM.
Date: June 1, 2011
Creator: Wagner, M. J. & Gilman, P.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Parabolic Trough Reference Plant for Cost Modeling with the Solar Advisor Model (SAM)

Description: This report describes a component-based cost model developed for parabolic trough solar power plants. The cost model was developed by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), assisted by WorleyParsons Group Inc., for use with NREL's Solar Advisor Model (SAM). This report includes an overview and explanation of the model, two summary contract reports from WorleyParsons, and an Excel spreadsheet for use with SAM. The cost study uses a reference plant with a 100-MWe capacity and six hours of thermal energy storage. Wet-cooling and dry-cooling configurations are considered. The spreadsheet includes capital and operating cost by component to allow users to estimate the impact of changes in component costs.
Date: July 1, 2010
Creator: Turchi, C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department