Maximizing investment value of small-scale PV in a smart grid environment

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Conference Proceeding
2016 IEEE International Conference on Renewable Energy Research and Applications, ICRERA 2016, 2016, pp. 385 - 390
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© 2016 IEEE. Determining the optimal size and orientation of small-scale residential based PV arrays will become increasingly complex in the future smart grid environment with the introduction of smart meters and dynamic tariffs. However consumers can leverage the availability of smart meter data to conduct a more detailed exploration of PV investment options for their particular circumstances. In this paper, an optimization method for PV orientation and sizing is proposed whereby maximizing the PV investment value is set as the defining objective. Solar insolation and PV array models are described to form the basis of the PV array optimization strategy. A constrained particle swarm optimization algorithm is selected due to its strong performance in non-linear applications. The optimization algorithm is applied to real-world metered data to quantify the possible investment value of a PV installation under different energy retailers and tariff structures. The arrangement with the highest value is determined to enable prospective small-scale PV investors to select the most cost-effective system.
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