Improvement in artificial neural network-based estimation of grid connected photovoltaic power output

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)838-848
Journal / PublicationRenewable Energy
Online published23 Jun 2016
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016


This paper presents a method to improve the accuracy of artificial neural network (ANN)–based estimation of photovoltaic (PV) power output by introducing two more inputs, solar zenith angle and solar azimuth angle, in addition to the most widely used environmental information, plane-of-array irradiance and module temperature. Solar zenith angle and solar azimuth angle define the solar position in the sky; hence, the loss of modeling accuracy due to impacts of solar angle-of-incidence and solar spectrum is reduced or eliminated. The observed data from two sites where local climates are significantly different is used to train and test the proposed network. The good performance of the proposed network is verified by comparing with existing ANN model, algebraic model, and polynomial regression model which use environmental information only of plane-of-array irradiance and module temperature. Our results show that the proposed ANN model greatly improves the accuracy of estimation in the long term under various weather conditions. It is also demonstrated that the improvement in estimating outdoor PV power output by adding solar zenith angle and azimuth angle as inputs is useful for other data-driven methods like support vector machine regression and Gaussian process regression.

Research Area(s)

  • Artificial neural network, Data-driven methods, Photovoltaic, Power output, Solar azimuth angle, Solar zenith angle