• TU Delft research team has developed a new approach through which it claims computational complexity in determining rooftop solar potential can come down significantly
  • Quantifying annual solar irradiation at a specific surface through sky view factor and sun coverage factor, the team offers a simplified calculation
  • The model is aimed at helping architects and urban planners to incorporate solar PV technology in their designs, they claim  

A team of researchers from the Netherlands’ Delft University of Technology have proposed a new approach which they claim can significantly help architects and urban planners to incorporate solar PV technology in their designs. Through this approach, one can quickly and accurately calculate the potential of PV in the urban environment, they say.

Their simplified calculation is based on a correlation between a skyline profile and the annual irradiation received at a particular spot, hence it gets the total annual solar irradiation at a selected surface in an urban environment and quantifies it basis the sky view factor and the sun coverage factor.

“While the first parameter is used to estimate the irradiation from the diffuse sunlight component, the second one is indicative for the irradiation from the direct sunlight component. These two parameters can be easily and quickly obtained from the skyline profile. The study shows that the use of these two parameters significantly reduces the computational complexity of the problem,” said the team.

The research was carried out as part of the Solar Urban programme of the university and was published in the journal Nature Energy.