A Concise Overview on State-of-the-Art Solar Resources and Forecasting

Speaker: Jan Kleissl

Date: Wed, Jul 26, 2023 to Thu, Jul 27, 2023

Location: PIMS, University of British Columbia, Online

Conference: PIMS-FACTS Workshop on Forecasting and Mathematical modeling for Renewable Energy

Subject: Mathematics, Applied Mathematics, Atmospheric and Oceanic Physics: Climate Modelling

Class: Scientific


The ability to forecast solar irradiance plays an indispensable role in solar power forecasting, which constitutes an essential step in planning and operating power systems under high penetration of solar power generation. Since solar radiation is an atmospheric process, solar irradiance forecasting, and thus solar power forecasting, can benefit from the participation of atmospheric scientists. In this talk, the two fields, namely, atmospheric science and power system engineering are jointly discussed with respect to how solar forecasting plays a part. Firstly, the state of affairs in solar forecasting is elaborated; some common misconceptions are clarified; and salient features of solar irradiance are explained. Next, five technical aspects of solar forecasting: (1) base forecasting methods, (2) post-processing, (3) irradiance-to-power conversion, (4) verification, and (5) grid-side implications, are reviewed. Following that, ten research topics moving into the future are enumerated; they are related to (1) data and tools, (2) numerical weather prediction, (3) forecast downscaling, (4) large eddy simulation, (5) dimming and brightening, (6) aerosols, (7) spatial forecast verification, (8) multivariate probabilistic forecast verification, (9) predictability, and (10) extreme weather events. Last but not least, a pathway towards ultra-high PV penetration is laid out, based on a recently proposed concept of firm generation and forecasting.