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Installation of roof-top solar PV modules and their impact on building cooling load

Kotak, Yash; Gago, E. J.; Mohanty, P.; Muneer, Tariq

Authors

Yash Kotak

E. J. Gago

P. Mohanty



Abstract

It has been shown by many researchers that over a long term there has been a slow but steady rise of ambient temperature within the Indian sub-continent. Due to an increased economic prosperity there has been an accompanied increase in the urban heat island effect. Furthermore, urbanisation of large cities in India has also led to higher population densities. The above factors had the combined effect of a significant increase of cooling load of buildings. The high density of dwellings and other building construction has resulted in shading of walls. However, the flat roof spaces are exposed to an uninterrupted solar radiation regime and this in turn leads to generation of high sol-air temperatures which cause higher cooling loads. Presently, it has been argued that roof spaces are one of the major contributors to building cooling load.In this article the reasons behind the phenomenal rise in the installation of air-conditioners in India are reviewed. The dual role of roof-top PV systems in electricity generation and reduction of building cooling load due to the shading they provide is then investigated. For this purpose, the CIBSE method to obtain sol-air temperature with solar radiation and outdoor ambient temperature has been used. Sol-air temperature for five key Indian locations (Delhi, Bhopal, Ahmadabad, Bhubaneswar and Chennai), based on the recently presented data by the NREL-India Meteorological Department consortium, were then obtained. A computer simulation routine was presently developed for solving the classical transient heat conduction problem with hourly sol-air temperature data and roof construction details provided to the routine. This program was executed to obtain the cooling load profile for each of the five Indian locations for the respective design day.
Practical application: The present work reviews the reasons behind the phenomenal rise in the installation of air-conditioners in India. The dual role of roof-top PV systems in electricity generation and reduction of building cooling load due to the shading they provide has been investigated. The computer simulation demonstrated that the energy required for roof-induced cooling load decreased between 73-90% after installation of the PV system. The method used in this work has the advantage that it enables the user to obtain cooling load estimates using a general transient heat conduction Roof-top solar PV module installation approach. Moreover, all software was developed within MS-Excel environment, this is also an additional advantage as the cost associated with purchase and training of proprietary building energy software can be prohibitive for many consultants who are based in developing countries.

Journal Article Type Article
Online Publication Date Mar 20, 2014
Publication Date 2014-11
Deposit Date Feb 25, 2015
Publicly Available Date Nov 29, 2017
Journal Building Services Engineering Research and Technology
Print ISSN 0143-6244
Electronic ISSN 1477-0849
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 35
Issue 6
Pages 613-633
DOI https://doi.org/10.1177/0143624414527098
Keywords Climate change; Solar PV modules; Building cooling load; CO2 emissions;
Public URL http://researchrepository.napier.ac.uk/id/eprint/7652
Publisher URL http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0143624414527098
Contract Date Nov 29, 2017

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