How much is a 1 percent of gain worth to a project this size? We compared five sites across the U.S. using PVsyst, a PC software package for the study, sizing, simulation and data analysis of complete PV systems. Using the program’s default values, PVsyst showed that the 1 percent gain could be worth more than $40,000 over 20 years at $0.12 per kilowatt hour. Columbus, Ohio, the least valuable of the five sites, showed a value of $28,000 while Tucson, Ariz., came in at more than $40,000.
With approximately 40 percent BoS wiring savings and up to 2 percent efficiency improvement, the economic value can top $100,000 per MW/DC ($0.10/watt). This is exactly why 1,000 VDC systems have been the preferred standard in Europe for several years. This technology and design standard has ability to appreciably drive price down and value up in North America. With code, inspector and equipment supply issues resolved, the future of 1,000 VDC domestic commercial PV is extremely promising.
For more information on leading 1,000 VDC system design visit the SMA Sunny Central CP-US Application Guide.
Byline: Jim Morgenson, Director of Business Development, Power Plant Solutions, SMA America