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Correct modelling of solar photovoltaic (PV) system yields is necessary to optimize system design, improve reliability of projected outputs to ensure favourable project financing and to facilitate proper operations and maintenance. An improved methodology for fine resolution modelling of PV systems is presented using module short-circuit current (Isc) at 5-minute time-scales, and clearly identifies pertinent error mechanisms that arise when working at this high resolution. This work used a modified version of the Sandia array performance model, and introduces new factors to the calculation of Isc to account for identified error mechanisms, including instrumentation alignment, spectral, and module power tolerance errors. A simple methodology was introduced and verified where specific module parameters can be derived solely from properly filtered performance time series data. In particular, this paper focused on methodologies for determining the predicted Isc for a variety of solar PV module types. These methods of regressive analysis significantly reduced the error of the predicted model, and demonstrate the need for this form of modelling when evaluating long term PV array performance. This methodology has applications for current systems operators, which will enable the extraction of useful module parameters from existing data in addition to more precise continuous monitoring of existing systems, and can also be used to more accurately model and optimize new systems.

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© 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. Deposited here in compliance with publisher policies. Publisher's version of record:

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Solar Energy