They develop a tool to optimize the joint production of wind and solar energy

Renewable energies, in particular wind and solar, are called upon to play a key role in the transition to decarbonized energy systems to halt climate change. However, their integration into development plans is compromised due to the intermittent productionsubject to variability in weather conditions.

To face this challenge, an international study led by researchers from University of Murcia It’s from Interdisciplinary Thematic Platform (PTI) Climate and Climate Services of CSIC proposes a strategy, based on the variability analysis resources, plan the deployment of wind and solar photovoltaic installations that optimize their space-time complementarity and minimize fluctuations in the joint production of both energies.

An optimal location of the installations of each technology would reduce by up to 60% the monthly anomalies of the total production of wind and solar energy

The result of the investigation was put into practice with the creation of a free access tool called Climax. It is about a model which identifies regions with similar temporal variability of both resources (solar and wind) and determines the optimal shares of each technology in these regions. In other words, it looks for those places where solar and wind energy can be harnessed to the fullest from a non-individual perspectivebut joint.

According to the researchers, an optimal location of the facilities for each technology would reduce monthly anomalies in the total production of wind and solar energy by up to 60%.

This methodology could reduce the intermittency of joint solar and wind generation, to help plan the deployment of new production units.

Despite the experimental and pilot character of the application, the mere development of this tool represents a substantial advance in relation to previous works that provided strictly academic research on the complementarity of both energies.

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“We present a new methodology based on climate science to reduce the unwanted flashing joint generation of solar and wind energy, with the aim of help plan the implementation of new renewable production units”, explain the researchers in the article published in the journal future of the earth.

In this sense, experts consider that the European regions included in the analysis should make efforts in their energy policies towards the deployment of more solar installations in order to reduce the month-to-month volatility of combined wind-solar production. “The benefits would be enormous, especially for the regions of southern Europe and at a continental level”, they conclude.

Access the Climax tool here.

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