TASK V: Solar Resource Assessment and Forecasting

Task Representative: Lourdes Ramirez, CIEMAT, Spain

Task Participants: 

  • Australia: BOM
  • Austria: BlueSky Wetteranalysen, ASIC
  • Canada: Environment Canada, CANMET
  • European Union / Italy: Joint Research Center (JRC)
  • France: EdM/Armines, LASH-ENTPE 
  • Germany: DLR, Suntrace GmbH, Univ. of Applied Sciences Ulm, Univ. of Oldenburg (EHF)
  • Norway: University of Agder
  • Slovakia: GeoModel s.r.o. 
  • Spain: CIEMAT, CENER, Univ. of Jaén, Univ. of Navarra
  • Switzerland: Meteotest, Univ. of Genève (UNIGE)
  • USA: NREL, NASA, SUNY

Nature of Work and Objectives

“Solar Resource Assessment and Forecasting” is an IEA Task under the Solar Heating and Cooling (SHC) Programme Implementing Agreement. There the Task is counted as Task-46. The IEA SolarPACES ExCo also guides the Task, where it is called Task V. It further maintains collaboration with the IEA PVPS (Photovoltaic Power Systems) Implementing Agreement.

The Task is a follow up of the earlier SHC-Task-36 named “Solar Resource Knowledge Management”. The title change reflects the changing priorities. The task now focuses primarily on the two most important topics in the field of solar radiation for solar energy applications: For financing the bigger and bigger projects sound solar resource assessments are more and more important. And for operation of the many MW installed power forecasting of solar radiation is receiving high attention from plant and grid operators. In SolarPACES it remains as Task V, but with a new title. The scope of work of the task addresses several more solar resource topics even beyond solar forecasting and resource assessment. But many are related to the main topics. It covers satellite-derived solar resource products, ground-based solar measurements also covering topics not picked up in Task 36 like measuring circumsolar radiation. The Task equally supports solar thermal heating and cooling, photovoltaics and concentrating solar power applications. However, for best serving the objectives of SolarPACES this report focuses on direct solar radiation, which can be concentrated. The four objectives of this Task are:

  • Evaluate solar resource variability that impacts large penetrations of solar technologies;
  • Develop standardized and integrating procedures for data bankability;
  • Improve procedures for short-term solar resource forecasting, and
  • Advance solar resource modeling procedures based on physical principles.

Achieving these objectives would reduce the cost of planning and deploying solar energy systems, improve efficiency of solar energy systems through more accurate and complete solar resource information, and increase the value of the solar energy produced by solar technologies.

The Task is now structured in four subtasks:

  • Subtask A: Solar Resource Applications for High Penetrations of Solar Technologies
  • Subtask B: Standardization and Integration Procedures for Data Bankability
  • Subtask C: Solar Irradiance Forecasting
  • Subtask D: Advanced Resource Modeling

More info on the task can be found here: http://task46.iea-shc.org/

Task Reports

Standardizing and Benchmarking of Model-Derived DNI-Products