Abnormal CSP results

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Abnormal CSP results

Hi Paul,

I run the simulation of CSP Through No/6h Storage with the TMY3 weather I created from EPW file.

I got abnormal results of hourly capacity factor with too many negative capacity factor and some as low as -150 which does not make sense.

The results seem OK for PV, with the same TMY3 weather data.

I have studied the weather data carefully and have no clue what caused this problem. I have many other data weather data input and those results look OK, but I'm a bit worried about potential errors as this problem happened. What's possible to cause this problem.

I attached the weather data and results file for your information.

Thank you for your advice.



Paul Gilman


I tried using the physical trough model with default inputs (optimized for the solar resource of Tuscon, Arizona), and see that there are long periods in the winter months where there is not sufficient solar energy to meet the power cycle's thermal energy requirement. During those times the system consumes energy from the grid (negative net energy) to prevent the fluids in the solar field and storage tanks from freezing. You can see that by plotting the following variables in the Time Series graph on the results page:

Net electric power output (kWh)
Freeze protection energy (MWh)
Tank freeze protection energy (MWh)

This suggests that given the data in your weather file, the solar resource is not sufficient for a 100 MWe power cycle with 6 hours of storage and a solar multiple of 2. Please see the instructions under "Sizing the Solar Field" in the Solar Field topic of SAM's Help systems for a suggestion of how to design the system for a given solar resource.

Best regards,

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