Preliminary Analysis of an Industrial Photovoltaic System and Comparison of Its Performance with a Wind Energy System and a Fuel Cell Power System
By Amal Kabalan, LEED A.P.; MDC Systems® Consulting Engineer
The purpose of this article is to test the feasibility of installing a Photovoltaic (PV) System on an industrial facility and then compare its costs to both a Wind Turbine and Natural Gas Fuel Cell system. A model that predicts the energy which a Photovoltaic (PV) System can generate in a certain location based on insolation data and shading will be used. The model also calculates the savings and the pay-back period based on current state subsidies and federal tax incentives. The article will start by describing the project and will simulate the energy expected from the solar panels. The article will then proceed to compare the power output and the cost of a Photovoltaic System to that of a Wind Energy System and a Fuel Cell Power System.
Solar System Analysis
The example industrial location is located in Pottstown, Pennsylvania, which is 40 miles west of Philadelphia. Due to its proximity to Philadelphia, it is reasonable to consider that it has the same latitude, longitude and weather conditions to that of Philadelphia for the purpose of the analysis. Latitude is 39.88 and longitude 75.25. Elevation is 6 meters. Figure 1 shows the location of the facility (B) in correspondence to Philadelphia (A). The facility has south and north exposures. The orientation is shown in Figure 2 (above).