Development of a model to simulate solar PV plants in MATLAB with a study on the effects of under-sizing the inverter
Tutor / director / evaluatorGomis Bellmunt, Oriol
Document typeMaster thesis
Rights accessOpen Access
The solar PV market is continuously expanding and utility - scale solar plants are becoming larger due to advantages in economies of scale. Consequently , it is an increasingly important part of the des ign to have reliable simulation software allowing investors and engineers to make financial and technical decisions. Moreover, for expert users it is important to have a flexible software in which every model can be tuned and adjusted. To address this is sue, the present thesis proposes the development of a MATLAB based program to simulate hourly production of solar PV systems. I t includes an application of the software in which the economic feasibility of under - sizing the inverter is studied. To create th e model, all the equation s are taken from either PVsyst or SAM and the algorithms used are explained in details. In the analysis on under - sizing the inverter, a 10 MW PV plant is designed and the LCOE as a function of the DC - to - AC ratio is analyzed for dif ferent locations. Results of the program against the reference software show that the hourly RMSE for the DC power is 0.26%. The analysis showed that an optimal DC - to - AC ratio for which LCOE is minimum can be found. The reduction in total LCOE and total ca pex is respectively around 3 .3 - 3.7 % and 4% depending on the location. Conclusions are that a flexible open source MATLAB code could be developed with high accuracy and that under - sizing the inverter make economic sense if carefully performed.