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How are defined the surfaces (areas) in PVsyst ?

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In the PV module:

The area is defined as the gross size of the module: Length x Width. Except with tile-modules, where this is may be defined as the apparent area.

This is the reference surface for the determination of the efficiency.

Now in the PV module you can also define the area of the cells (sensitive area): this is only used for the evaluation of the cell's efficiency, i.e. a characteristics of the PV module technology.

The simulation uses the rough area of the modules for the evaluation of the efficiency.

In the 3D shading part:

In a first step, the areas are defined independtly of the modules: these are generic surfaces which may receive the installation of modules, whatever their size, disposition, and spacing between them. The shading factor calculation is not very sensitive to the real area.

These plane areas may (should) be over-sized in order to be sufficient for receiving the modules. When you exit the 3D editor, PVsyst will check that you have defined sufficient room for placing the modules defined in the System part. This should not be less than the total modules area, but may be largely oversized.

In a final step (in the future version 6) the layout of the modules will have to be fully defined on these surfaces, in order to compute the electrical effects of the shadings.

After this definition the 3D areas will be readjusted to the real position of the modules and their eventual spacing.

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