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Title: The Impact of Indoor and Outdoor Radiometer Calibration on Solar Measurements: Preprint

Accurate solar radiation data sets are critical to reducing the expenses associated with mitigating performance risk for solar energy conversion systems, and they help utility planners and grid system operators understand the impacts of solar resource variability. The accuracy of solar radiation measured by radiometers depends on the instrument performance specification, installation method, calibration procedure, measurement conditions, maintenance practices, location, and environmental conditions. This study addresses the effect of calibration methodologies and the resulting calibration responsivities provided by radiometric calibration service providers such as the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and manufacturers of radiometers. Some of these radiometers are calibrated indoors, and some are calibrated outdoors. To establish or understand the differences in calibration methodology, we processed and analyzed field-measured data from these radiometers. This study investigates calibration responsivities provided by NREL's broadband outdoor radiometer calibration (BORCAL) and a few prominent manufacturers. The reference radiometer calibrations are traceable to the World Radiometric Reference. These different methods of calibration demonstrated 1% to 2% differences in solar irradiance measurement. Analyzing these values will ultimately assist in determining the uncertainties of the radiometer data and will assist in developing consensus on a standard for calibration.
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Conference: Presented at the European PV Solar Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC), 20-24 June 2016, Munich, Germany
Research Org:
NREL (National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), Golden, CO (United States))
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), Solar Energy Technologies Office (EE-4S)
Country of Publication:
United States
14 SOLAR ENERGY; 47 OTHER INSTRUMENTATION radiometer calibration; thermopile; photodiode; pyranometer; pyrheliometers; global horizontal irradiance; direct normal irradiance; diffuse global irradiance; responsivity; measurement uncertainty