Panel Shading

Panel Shading lets you optimize the geometry of rows of flat-plate solar collectors (PV or solar thermal) by visualizing on an annual basis how much the rows shade each other each hour of the day, each month of the year. The tool accepts a location and the dimensions of the panels and environment as inputs, and produces a chart depicting the degree to which the panels are shaded each hour. By adjusting the panel dimensions, tilt, and spacing, shading can be minimized during critical periods. Screen Shots

Keywords

solar panels, pv, photovoltaics, solar collectors, solar thermal, shading, solar

Validation/Testing

Outputs verified by the author via several 3D shading models.

Expertise Required

None.

Users

International; number not known since tool was just released.

Audience

Architects, builders, homeowners, passive solar designers, energy analysts, solar energy system installers.

Input

Location, surface tilt, panel spacing, tilt, and dimensions.

Output

Chart with visual representation of panel shading for each hour for each month of the year.

Computer Platform

Any Web browser.

Programming Language

Javascript.

Strengths

Instant visualization of a large dataset; very easy to use

Weaknesses

Currently only designed for fixed panels (non-tracking systems)

Contact

Company:

Sustainable By Design

Address:

3631 Bagley Ave. N
Seattle, WA 98103
United States

Telephone:

206-925-9290

E-mail:

Christopher@susdesign.com

Website:

http://www.susdesign.com

Availability

Web-based shareware...free to use;  $10 to $25 donation requested if you find the program useful;  the tool's Web site is: http://susdesign.com/panel_shading