(IJCSIS) International Journal of Computer Science and Information Security,Vol. 11, No. 3, March 2013
Location-based Solar Energy Potential PredictionAlgorithm for Mountainous Rural Landscapes
Onabajo Olawale Olusegun,Faculty of Computer Science & Information Technology,Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, 94300 Kota Samarahan, MalaysiaChong Eng Tan,Faculty of Computer Science & Information Technology,Universiti Malaysia Sarawak, 94300 Kota Samarahan,
world is facing critical energy crisis today. As a resultthe conventional grid energy supplies are not enough to meet thepresent demand.
Many advance researches are in progress toovercome this energy predicament.
Power generation andmanagement in disconnected rural villages is challenging.
Thesituation is even more challenging when landscape structure in suchenvironment are irregular.
Forces of diffusion, ground reflectanceand sky view factor among others, affect the quality of final solarradiation incident on a solar panel.
This paper describes theimplementation of an algorithm that can be used to predict solarenergy potential of irregular landscapes. Location-based SolarEnergy Potential Prediction Algorithm (LOSEPPA) takes as input,the geographic latitude and longitude of the location of interest tocompute the Solar Irradiance Factor (SIF). Geographic latitude playsan important role in the availability of sufficient solar radiation aswell as the state of the atmosphere. Therefore, SIF value serves as aguide to the state of the atmosphere in terms of degree of cloud cover,temperature, humidity and landscape structure; which determines thefeasibility of the solar energy implementation. The approachdescribed in this paper can be used for rapidly computing the amountof solar radiation generated on a mountainous landscape surface andin the atmosphere as a function of height parameters
With SIF valueknown, solar panel can be mounted along specific angle of inclination to the sun. The algorithm design covers one year periodand is based on the Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of the locationunder investigation. The proposed system was simulated usingMATLAB
Result show that the more irregular the landscape is, the lower thesolar irradiance factor. SIF value of 400 and above predicts wellenough sunshine for solar PV implementation in mountainouslandscapes. Sample results show that solar radiation per kernel perday for a given landscape is highest between 12noon and 2.00PMlocal time; and the radiation per kernel per year for a givenlandscape have highest sunshine hours in January and December.
Diffusion, Solar Panel, Landscape, DEM
SYMBOLS AND ABBREVIATIONS
- Geographic Latitude
- Angle of rotation of the XYZ coordinates
- Solar declination angle
- Angle between the earth’s axis and the XYZ coordinate Z axis
This work is supported partly by Centre for Graduate Studies UniversitiMalaysia Sarawak (UNIMAS).
– Time of rotation of the XYZ coordinate from t
– Vector normal to the grid cell surfaceS
– Solar vector at noon local timeS
– Solar vector at time tS
– Solar Constant (1367 Wm
)Kernel – 3X3 Grid WindowSKV – Sky View FactorDEM – Digital Elevation ModelSIF – Solar Irradiance FactorFCN - Four Closest NeighborsMAPE – Mean Absolute Percentage ErrorANN – Artificial Neural NetworkMBE – Mean Bias ErrorRMSE – Root Mean Square Error
This paper is the first of two papers describing theimplementation of intelligent algorithms useful in solar energypotential prediction, generation and management in topographicallychallenging rural areas. In response to the growing concern over theuse of fossil fuels, renewable energy industries are becomingsignificant economic drivers in different parts of the world.Disconnected rural communities
are cut off from governmenteconomic transformation agenda as a result of not being connectedto the national grid. Many remote residences, businesses andcommunities located in the sparsely populated and rugged terrains;faces serious challenge in accessing uninterruptible wirelessbroadband as a result of intermittent electricity supply. Analternative energy supply system in the form of solar electricity,supported by indigenous communities has been widely accepted asa provisional escape route for the rural folks from abject povertycaused by digital divide. The stand-alone photo-voltaic energysystem is a well tested energy alternative in an environment wheregrid electricity is completely absent. However, in mountainousareas, amount of solar radiation obtained on a landscape surface isimpacted by numerous environmental factors such as cloud cover,humidity, zenith angle of the sun, diffusion, ground reflectance, air-mass ratio, sky view factor (SVF) and the general albedo of theland surface among others; that must be taken into consideration inorder to get the net solar radiation incidence on the solar panel. Terrain parameters derived from DEMs, such as slope, aspect and