Photovoltaic Power Systems Planning in Distribution Networks based on GIS

I.J. Ramírez-Rosado (Spain), V. Miranda (Portugal), P.J. Zorzano-Santamaría, E. García-Garrido, E. Zorzano-Alba (Spain), C. Monteiro (Portugal), and A. Martínez-Fernández (Spain)


Photovoltaic Power Systems, Optimal Planning, Distributed Generation (DG), Geographical Information Systems (GIS)


This paper presents a novel methodology and models for photovoltaic power systems planning, in order to determine the optimal economical location of photovoltaic installations for the production of electrical energy in a geographical region. The computer implementation of the models have lead to a new computational tool, based on GIS, that has been applied for the optimal regional planning of power photovoltaic resources. A selection of the corresponding computer results for the region of La Rioja (Spain) are included in this paper, showing geographical maps that indicate the places for the optimal economical installation of photovoltaic systems. The developed software is very flexible to study a large amount of planning cases or scenarios, including the economic competition between photovoltaic isolated systems and photovoltaic systems connected to power distribution networks, as well as considering the sale price of this renewable electric energy to such distribution networks, price that is strongly economically subsided in Spain. The GIS tool can be used by electric utilities, private investors, environmental and energy agencies, government authorities, etc. in order to study practical real life applications. The software has been created in a main research project sponsored by the Spanish authorities and European Union funds.

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