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Estimation of the largest expected photovoltaic power ramp rates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Original languageEnglish
Article number115636
Number of pages13
JournalApplied Energy
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2020
Publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


Photovoltaic (PV) systems are prone to irradiance variation caused by cloud shadows leading to fluctuations in generated power. Since these fluctuations can be harmful to the operation of power grids, there is a need to restrict the largest PV power ramp rates (RR). This article proposes a method to estimate the largest expected PV power RRs. The only inputs of the method are the minimum PV system dimension and the measurements of point irradiance and cloud shadow velocity. Since cloud shadows cause the largest power RRs for well-designed large-scale PV power plants, the relation between the largest RRs in irradiance and power during partial cloud shading events was studied based on irradiance measurements. The largest RRs in PV power are estimated from RRs in the average irradiance across the PV system. The proposed method was validated using measured data of 57 days from two PV systems. It showed superior performance compared to an existing method enveloping the RR in the measured power over 99.99% of the time. The method can be used in design and component sizing of PV power plants.


  • Energy storage sizing, Irradiance transition, Partial shading, Photovoltaic power generation, Power fluctuation, Power ramp rate estimation

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