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  • Yakub Ansari

Increase solar panel output by 7-8% with an Optimal angle

Have you ever wonder how to increase the energy production of your existing solar panels to meet your increase in power demand. Motorized Sun tracking systems are highly expensive and required a huge place (almost double than the fixed-tilt structure) to install. Also, the maintenance cost of the sun tracking system is higher than that of a fixed structure.

The optimal angle for a solar panel is defined as the tilting angle at which PV panels produce more power (7 to 8%) for different seasons as compared to the fixed solar structure. However seasonal structures are used for fixing PV panels to get the optimal angle for different seasons. Seasonal structures are a little higher in price than that of fixed structure but are very cheaper than the sun tracking system.

The thump rule of determining optimal angle for PV panel is to add 15 degrees to the latitude of your region for winter season and summer season you need to minus 15 degrees for the latitude to get an increase (7 to 8%) the power production of the PV panel and this can be practically implemented in any location throughout the world.

To find the latitude of your place, all need to do is go to Google map and right-click on your place. After right-click, you will find a window on Google map (as shown below) and the first two digits will represent the latitude of your place.

The above picture shows the latitude of the network city (that is 40 degree)

There several brief pieces of literature available on the internet regarding the studies executed by different authors to determine the optimal tilt angle of the PV. Some of them are listed here

Optimal Tilt Angle Computation

From different studies on the optimal angle for PV panel, I used the real-time data for one of the studies held on the rooftop of UIET, Panjab University (Chandigarh, India). In this experiment, 5 numbers of solar PV plants of rated capacity 1 kW each have been installed at different tilt angles (10,20,25,30 & 40) for the year 2018. [Click here to download the complete study paper]

Also for this experiment, Zytech Model ZT 320P solar panels are used with grid-tie micro-inverters of SOLAX.

Here is the table showing the real-time data of power generation (in kWh) by 1kW of a solar power plant from a different angle.