Accelerating ray tracing of real bifacial systems


Accurate modelling of bifacial illumination is critical to improve the prediction of the energy yield of bifacial solar systems. Monte Carlo ray tracing is the most powerful tool to accomplish this task. In this work, we accelerate Monte Carlo ray tracing of large solar systems by nearly 90%. Our model achieves root mean square error values of 7.9% and 37.2% for the front and rear irradiance compared against single-axis tracking field reference data, respectively. The rear irradiance modelling error decreases to 18.9% if suspected snow periods are excluded. Crucially, our full system simulations show that surrounding ground surfaces affect the rear irradiance deep into the system. Therefore, unit system simulations cannot necessarily ignore the influence of the perimeter of large installations to accurately estimate annual yield. Large-scale simulations involving high-performance supercomputing were necessary to investigate these effects accurately, calibrate our simplified models and validate our results against experimental measurements.


Reference Link
M. Ernst, G. E. Conechado, and C.-A. Asselineau, “Accelerating the Simulation of Annual Bifacial Illumination of Real Photovoltaic Systems with Ray Tracing,” iScience, p. 103698, 2021.

Open access