ISRO Develops "Solar Calculator" Android App

Computation of solar energy potential is essential to select the locations for solar photovoltaic (PV) thermal power plants. The use of remote sensing observations from geostationary satellite sensors is ideal to capture space-time variability of surface insolation. An android App for the computation of solar energy potential has been developed by Space Applications Centre (SAC), ISRO, Ahmedabad at the behest of Ministry of New and Renewable Energy, Govt. of India. It is a very useful tool for installation of PV solar panels for tapping solar energy.

The App provides monthly / yearly solar potential (in kWh/m2) and minimum / maximum temperature at any location. It also displays the location on the satellite image and provides azimuth / elevation angles as well as day length over different time periods in a year.

Following are the major features of the App:

  • The App provides solar energy potential (in kWh/m2) at any given location
  • The required location can be keyed in or can be obtained through GPS
  • It gives monthly and yearly solar potential processed using Indian Geostationary Satellite data (Kalpana-1, INSAT-3D and INSAT-3DR). It also offers monthly minimum and maximum temperature to calculate realistic solar potential
  • Location is displayed on image with satellite data in the background
  • It also provides azimuth and elevation angles, and day length over different time periods in a year.
  • Obstruction of sunlight due to terrain is also calculated using Digital Elevation Model (DEM)
  • It also suggests optimum tilt angle for solar PV installation
  • This App needs internet connection to calculate the results
  • Complete report can be saved as a PDF file

The App can be downloaded from “New and Renewable Energy” section at vedas.sac.gov.in

References:

The detailed methodology of computation of daily total insolation is available from the following references:

  • Bhattacharya, B. K., Padmanabhan, N., Sazid, Md., Ramakrishnan, R. and Parihar, J. S., Assessing solar energy potential over India using diurnal remote sensing observations from Indian geostationary satellite.Int. J. Remote Sensing, 2013, 34(20), 7069?7090. DOI: 10.1080/01431161.2013.811311
  • Vyas, S. S., Bhattacharya, B. K. and Nigam R., Assured solar energy hot-spots over Indian landmass detected through remote sensing observations from Geostationary Meteorological Satellite. Current Science, 2016, 111(5), 836842.

Screen Shots of the Solar Calculator

Tabular Description

Tabular Description

 

Graphical Representation

Graphical Representation

 

Image View

Image View