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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)

Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm


Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015

DEVELOPMENT OF COMPUTER SOFTWARE


FOR SUN ALTITUDE AND AZIMUTH
ORIENTATION
*Ejiko, S.O.1, Oke P. K.2, Titiladunayo I. F.3, Ogedengbe T. I.4
1

Department of Mechanical Engineering,


The Federal Polytechnic, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Nigeria
2

Department of Mechanical Engineering,


Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State
3

Department of Mechanical Engineering,


Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State
4

Department of Mechanical Engineering,


Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State

ABSTRACT
The rapid determination of sun position in relation to the earth with computer programming is pivotal in optimizing solar radiation
collected by solar panels. Programming is the process of writing and testing computer program to project information through rapid
analysis and documentation. Software for rapid determination of Altitude and Azimuth angles was developed using predictive
models for solar panels orientation. Java programming language was used to developed the software named Computer Aided
Altitude and Azimuth Orientation (CALAZO 2015). The results from validation show that suns angles for appropriate panel
orientation varies dependently on the time, day and also the year. The software developed also serves as a foundational platform for
holistic approached in optimizing solar energy reception.

KEYWORDS: Program, Azimuth, Altitude, Software, Java, Netbeans, Computer,

1.INTRODUCTION
Computer is an electro mechanical device which accepts data as input, process it to give useful information as output which
can either be printed out as a hard copy by a printing device or displayed as a soft copy on the Visual Display Unit (V.D.U.)
or stored on secondary storage media for future use [1]. Computer programming (often shortened to programming or
coding) is the process of writing, testing, debugging/troubleshooting and maintaining the source code of computer
programs. This source code is writing in a programming language. The code may be a modification of an existing source or
something completely new. The purpose of programming is to create program that exhibits a certain desired behavior
(customization). The process of writing source codes requires expertise in many different subjects, including knowledge of
the application domain, specialized algorithms and formal logic [2], [3].
Programming job usually involves: Requirements analysis, Specification, Software architecture, Coding, Compilation,
Software testing, Documentation integration and Maintenance. A mathematical model formulated by [4] that established an
output of sun position, showing azimuth, altitude and zenith angles of the sun. The generated model was used to develop a
computer program for rapid computation of sun position.

2.JAVA PROGRAMMING LANGUAGE.


Java is a general-purpose computer programming language that is concurrent, class-based, object-oriented, and specifically
designed to have as few implementation dependencies as possible [5]. It is intended to let application developers write
once, run anywhere "(WORA) [6]. The compiled java code can run on all platforms that support Java without the need for
recompilation [7], [8]. Java applications are typically compiled to byte code that can run on any Java virtual machine (JVM)
regardless of computer architecture. As of 2015, Java is one of the most popular programming languages in use [9]. The
programming language was particularly design for client-server web applications, with a reported 9 million developers. Java
was originally developed by James Gosling at Sun Microsystems (which has since been acquired by Oracle Corporation) and
released in 1995 as a core component of Sun Microsystems' Java platform. The language derives much of its syntax from C
and C++, but it has fewer low-level facilities than either of them.

Volume 3 Issue 9 September 2015

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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)


Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm
Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015


3.NETBEANS

NetBeans is a software development platform written in Java. The NetBeans Platform allows applications to be developed
from a set of modular software components called modules. Applications based on the NetBeans Platform, including the
NetBeans integrated development environment (IDE), can be extended by third party developers [10]. The NetBeans IDE is
primarily intended for development in Java, but also supports other languages, in particular PHP, C /C++ and HTML5 [11].
NetBeans is cross-platform and runs on Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X , Linux, Solaris and other platforms supporting a
compatible JVM .The NetBeans Team actively support the product and seek feature suggestions from the wider community.
Every release is preceded by a time for Community testing and feedback [12].

4.METHODOLOGY
In order to formulate mathematical models for solar orientation, some of the basic aspects of sun movement process and
season of the year were considered in formulating a relationship between the position of the sun at any time of the day, as a
function of time and day. With the aid of a theodolite, precision compass, and a global positioning system (GPS), the study
of the sun movement was carried out at the beginning, the middle, and the end of every month that cut through the year
2014 in the Federal Polytechnic Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State, Nigeria. The data collected serves as the source for the formulation
of the mathematical model as given by [4] Ejiko et al., (2015) in equations (1) (7), where equations (1) - (5), (6) - (7) are
to Azimuth and Altitude with respect to the hourly, daily conditions on yearly basis respectively.

6T

1 180.5 65.5 tanh


6.65 22.325 24 cos0.9984 D
11.5

6T

2 180.5 65.5 tanh


6.65 22.325 24 cos0.9984 D
11.5

a
a
e e
3 348 56 a
23 24 cos 0.9874 D
a
e e

ea ea
4 38 32 a
a
e e

23 24 cos 0 . 9874 D

(1)
(2)

(3)

(4)

5 93 24

cos0.984 D 310T 3720

(5)

x 1366

1 9.667 T 66 .669 1 .8 sin 0.492 D 0.3t 2.1


2 10T 198 .2 1 .8

sin 0.492 D 0.3t 5.7

(6)
(7)

the azimuth angle is for days, D is the number of days of the year and T is the time in hour per day. 1 is the
azimuth angle for days 1 to 78 and 273 to 366; 7 T 13 , 2 is the azimuth angle on same days as 1 ;
13 T 18.5 , 3 and 4 are for azimuth angle on day 79 to 272; 7 T 12 and 13 T 18.5 respectively, while
Where

5 is for day 79 to 272 at 12hours to 13hours. a, is a function of T as in 1 . 1 , is the altitude angle on either 365 or 366
days for 7 T 13 and, 2 is the altitude angle on either 365 or 366 days for 13 T 18.5 .The combined equations
were used to develop a computer program written in Java programming language using Netbeans IDE in which the sun
position can be predicted easily. Data collected in the following year was used to validate the model.

5.COMPUTER SOFTWARE DEVELOPMENT


The computer program is designed in such a way that will be useful for the rapid prediction of the sun position at any time
of the day. The major factors influencing the predicted position of the sun are day of the year and time of the day. The data
obtained from the sun was used to generate models for the sun position. The resulting model generated from the combined
experimental data was used in the development of computer program named Computer Aided Altitude and Azimuth
Orientation (CALAZO 2015) written in Java programming language using NetBeans IDE computer software because of its
user- friendliness characteristics [13]. The developed CALAZO 2015 software was used to estimate the position of the sun
during the day.

Volume 3 Issue 9 September 2015

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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)


A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015

Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm


Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

6.STAGES IN ALGORITHM AND FLOWCHART DEVELOPMENT.


Algorithm is well defined as set of procedure and instructions for solving the problems in a finite and unambiguous number
of steps [1]. This algorithm involves identifying the expected angles of azimuth and altitude angles. The software is
expected to input a valid time which ranges from 7:00am to 6:00pm, day and month of the year such that when the
command button is pressed estimated angles of zenith altitude, and azimuth and be presented. The computer program
interface has five sections (form) as shown in Figure 1. The first form shows a radio button to toggle between ordinary year
and leap year, the second form dealt with the input involving the hour and minute of the day. The third form involves the
month and date input, while the forth form comprises of the command, clear and exist buttons. There functions are to
implement the estimation of the predictive models by applying the six equations, remove previous inputs for estimation and
completely by pass the program respectively. The fifth form shows the output of altitude, azimuth and zenith in degrees that
are fundamental for optimum solar panel energy reception. The flowchart for developing the software program is shown in
Figure 3.
Algorithm for determining the best orientation of solar panel for optimum radiation
Rem: Algorithm for determining the various orientation of the solar panel
1.0 Identify the time in hour and minute, the date in terms of day and month for the orientation required.
2.0 Estimate the time in minute as a fraction of 60 that is converting to hours.
3.0 Ascertain the time that it is between 7.0am and 18.5pm, if no end process else move next.
4.0 Ascertain the day that it is from 1 to 366, if no end process else move to the next step.
5.0 For day from 1 to 79 or 273 to 366 and the time T is from 7.0 hour to 13.0 hour apply equation 1 to determine the
azimuth.
6.0 If time is above 13.0 hour and within 18.5 hour apply equation 2
7.0 For day 80 to 272 at T (time) within 7 to 12 hour apply equation 3.
8.0 If time is above 13.0 hour and within 18.5 hour apply equation 4.
9.0 From day 1 to day 366 estimate the altitude for hours of 7am to 12pm with equation 6.
10.0 For T greater than 12pm and within 18.5pm apply equation 7 for altitude angle.
11.0 Print altitude and azimuth angle, hence apply to the microcontroller.
12.0 Stop

7.RESULTS AND DISCUSSION


Predictive models developed from data obtained through experimental field work in the Federal Polytechnic Ado-Ekiti,
serves as the basis for the computer software developed. The parameters for the independent variables are time day and year
as against the dependent variable of azimuth and altitude. Specific models base on their days and time range were presented
in equations (1) to (7). Considering the interface of computer program developed in Figure 2, data were generated
automatically for day 6. The time and day involved were imputed subsequently output in term of azimuth, altitude and
zenith angle were generated. The implication of Figure 2 signify that the panels be positioned at 1140 along the longitude
and facing the sun at 180 incline for optimal solar radiation. Figure 2 also reflect the altitude angle, which clearly shows the
actual position of the sun in relation to the earth axis. The subtraction of the altitude angle from 900 gives the zenith angle.
The zenith angle of 720 is therefore the most appropriate position for panel optimum energy reception.

REFERENCES
[1] D.L. Aronu, Computer Operations and Applications 1st ed. Olajamon Printers and Publishers, Lagos Street, Kaduna.
1996 Pp75-90
[2] G. Paul, Hackers & Painters. www.paulgraham.com/hp.html 2006 Retrieved on 22-08-2006
[3] S.O. Ejiko, Development of Computer Software for Determining Lathes Sensitivity, A paper presented at the 8th
Engineering Forum, School of Engineering, The Federal Polytechnic, Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State. 2012 Pp 120-128
[4] S.O. Ejiko, P.K. Oke, I.F. Titiladunayo and T.I. Ogedengbe, Development of Solar Azimuth and Altitude Predictive
Models (A Case Study of Ado-Ekiti), SEEM Research and Development Journal, The Federal Polytechnic, Ado-Ekiti,
Ekiti State Nigeria, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 97 -112, 2015
[5] J. Gosling, B. Joy, G. Steele and G. Bracha, "Design Goals of the Java Programming Language.
www.oracle.com/technetwork/java/intro-141325.html 1998 Retrieved on 01-01- 1998
[6] J. Gosling, B. Joy, G. Steele and G. Bracha "The Java Language Specification", 2nd ed. Addison Wesley, Boston. 2000
[7] J. Gosling, B. Joy and G. Steele "The Java Language Specification", Sun Microsystems Inc, 2550 Garcia Avenue,
Mountain View, CA, 94043-1100, USA. 1996

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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)


A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015

Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm


Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

[8] C. Serodio, C., J.B. Cunha and C. Couto Bringing the World Wide Web to Agricultural Systems Based on the Java
Environment www.google.com.ng/search?q=gosling+et+al+1998+write+once+run+anywhere&btnG Retrieved on 2807-2015, 2015
[9] O.
G.
Stephen,
The
RedMonk
Prgramming
Language
Rankings:
January
2015
https://redmonk.com/sogrady/2015/01/14/language-rankings1-15/ 2015 retrieved 28-10- 2015,
[10] Netbeans A Brief History of NetBeans" https//netbeans.org/about/history.html 2008 Retrieved on 17-05-2008
[11] NetBeans, IDE Dual License Header and License Notice: https//netbeans.org/about/press/49.html 2013 Retrieved on
18-07-2013
[12] H. Bock, "The Definitive Guide to NetBeans Platform" 1st ed., Apress Publisher 2009 p.450.
[13] W. Peter, The Beginners guide to Visual Basic. Wrox Press Ltd. Birmingbam, UK 1994

Figure 1 Interface of computer program developed

Figure 2 Interface for calculating day 6 angular output

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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)


A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015

Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm


Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

Figure 3 Flowchart of program implementation

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IPASJ International Journal of Computer Science (IIJCS)


A Publisher for Research Motivation ........

Volume 3, Issue 9, September 2015

Web Site: http://www.ipasj.org/IIJCS/IIJCS.htm


Email: editoriijcs@ipasj.org
ISSN 2321-5992

AUTHOR
Engr. Ejiko Samuel Omojola is a Mechanical Engineer with several years of practical
experience, with interest in Production, Plant Power and Automobile engineering. His
academic background includes Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering (Production
Option), Post Graduate Diploma in Mechanical Engineering and Higher National Diploma in
Mechanical Engineering. He is a registered engineer with Council for the Regulation of
Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), a member of Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE), a member
of Nigeria Association of Technologist in Engineering (NATE) and a member of Nigeria
Institute of Mechanical Engineers (NimechE) among others. He is currently a lecturer in
Mechanical Engineering Department of the Federal Polytechnic Ado-Ekiti. He is currently pursuing his Ph.D in Mechanical
engineering at the Federal University of Technology, Akure in Ondo State.
Dr. P. K. Oke is a Mechanical Engineer with several years of practical experience, with
interest in Production engineering. His academic background includes Doctor of Philosophy
(PhD), Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering (Production Option), Bachelor in
Engineering from University Of Ado Ekiti (UNAD). He is a registered engineer with Council
for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), a member of Nigeria Society of
Engineers (NSE), He is currently a lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Department of the
Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria.
Dr. F. I. Titiladunayo is a Mechanical Engineer with several years of practical experience,
with interest in Plant Power and Automobile engineering. His academic background includes
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD), Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering, Bachelor in
Engineering from the Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), He is a registered
engineer with Council for the Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), a member of
Nigeria Society of Engineers (NSE), He is currently a lecturer in Mechanical Engineering
Department of the Federal University of Technology Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria.
Dr. T. I. Ogedengbe is a Mechanical Engineer with several years of practical experience, with
interest in Production engineering. His academic background includes Doctor of Philosophy
(PhD), Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering, Bachelor in Engineering from the Federal
University of Technology, Akure (FUTA), He is a registered engineer with Council for the
Regulation of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), a member of Nigeria Society of Engineers
(NSE), He is currently a lecturer in Mechanical Engineering Department of the Federal
University of Technology Akure, Ondo state, Nigeria

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