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Title: Comprehensive feasibility assessment of building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) on building surfaces in high-density urban environments
Authors: Sun, H 
Heng, CK 
Tay, SER 
Chen, T 
Reindl, T 
Issue Date: 1-Sep-2021
Publisher: Elsevier BV
Citation: Sun, H, Heng, CK, Tay, SER, Chen, T, Reindl, T (2021-09-01). Comprehensive feasibility assessment of building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) on building surfaces in high-density urban environments. Solar Energy 225 : 734-746. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: Deployment of building integrated photovoltaics (BIPV) requires smart planning to optimise the production of renewable energies, while preserving the aesthetic quality of the urban landscape, especially in densely built-up urban environments. A comprehensive mapping tool is proposed here to investigate the feasibility of BIPV applications, by introducing a quantitative visual impact assessment in addition to the traditional energy yield projections. The concept is tested in a case study of buildings along Orchard Road, the main commercial and tourist boulevard in the South-East Asian city state of Singapore. First, a visibility analysis of each building surface is conducted from the perspective of simulated pedestrians at street-level, based on line-of-sight. This is followed by an assessment of the solar energy harvesting potential based on simulated annual solar irradiation values on the various building surfaces. Lastly, the visibility assessment is overlaid on the 3D solar irradiation map to identify and visualise the most suitable building surfaces for BIPV applications. In addition, the influence of road-side trees on the feasibility of BIPV has been studied. Depending on the degree of visual impact, different strategies are proposed for the optimum deployment of BIPV, ranging from high-efficiency technologies to aesthetic BIPV and media walls. The proposed methodology could evolve as a standard tool for the decision-making process in high-density urban environments and thus further assist in promoting the large-scale adoption of BIPV.
Source Title: Solar Energy
ISSN: 0038092X
DOI: 10.1016/j.solener.2021.07.060
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