The Solar heat resource is dependent in the first instance on the insolation falling on the surface of Ireland. The usable power generated by solar panels will vary depending on latitude, time of year and weather conditions. According to the European Solar Thermal Industry Federation, current technology produces per square metre of solar panel between 300 and 450 thermal kWh/year.
The resource area is based on the roof area of existing and future dwellings. The resource is measured in terms of metres squared, which is the standard size of solar panels supplied into the Irish Market. Levelised cost analysis shows that Active Solar Thermal combi systems produce thermal energy at a cost of 14 Cents/kWh in 2004.
The proportion of thermal energy that could be supplied by Active Solar Thermal power may have the potential to compete with electricity assuming there is no real price reduction in electricity over the period of analysis and there are significant real price decreases in Active Solar Thermal Technology and significant productivity increases.
Author: Erwing G.
Date of Publication: 2004
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