NREL Updates National Solar Radiation Database

May 25, 2007

The Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and collaborators have updated the National Solar Radiation Database, a planning tool that provides critical information about the amount of solar energy that is available at any given location.

The database is widely used by solar system designers, building architects and engineers, renewable energy analysts and others to plan, size and site solar energy systems.

It provides hourly solar radiation and meteorological data for 1991–2005 for 1,454 stations and features a new hourly 10-kilometer gridded data set for 1998–2005. This expands the original 1961–1990 database, which contains solar and meteorological data for only 239 stations.

The 1991–2005 National Solar Radiation Database is distributed by the National Climatic Data Center and is also accessible from NREL’s Renewable Resource Data Center Web site.

An accompanying report, National Solar Radiation Database 1991–2005 Update: User's Manual, provides user instructions and information about the database’s development and data access. The manual also includes a complete list of stations and a data quality summary for each site (PDF 14MB). Download Acrobat Reader.

Primary funding for the project came from DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, with additional support from the Atmospheric Sciences Research Center (State University of New York at Albany), Climate Systems Branch (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), National Climatic Data Center (U.S. Department of Commerce), Northeast Regional Climate Center (Cornell University), Solar Consulting Services (Colebrook, New Hampshire) and the Solar Radiation Monitoring Laboratory (University of Oregon).

NREL is the U.S. Department of Energy's primary national laboratory for renewable energy and energy efficiency research and development. NREL is operated for DOE by Midwest Research Institute and Battelle.

Explore further: Hubble view: Wolf-Rayet stars, intense and short-lived

Related Stories

New study re-writes the rules of carbon analysis

Jun 30, 2015

A new study published today in Nature Climate Change has found analyses of carbon emissions may be misleading as they failed to include the impacts of policies such as trading schemes, emission caps or quo ...

Recommended for you

Hubble view: Wolf-Rayet stars, intense and short-lived

Jul 03, 2015

This NASA/European Space Agency (ESA) Hubble Space Telescope picture shows a galaxy named SBS 1415+437 (also called SDSS CGB 12067.1), located about 45 million light-years from Earth. SBS 1415+437 is a Wolf-Rayet ...

NASA image: Stellar sparklers that last

Jul 03, 2015

While fireworks only last a short time here on Earth, a bundle of cosmic sparklers in a nearby cluster of stars will be going off for a very long time. NGC 1333 is a star cluster populated with many young ...

Light echo helps researchers map out parts of galaxy

Jul 03, 2015

Thousands of years before humans invented agriculture, a bright burst of X-rays left the dense neutron star Circinus X-1, located in the faint Southern constellation Circinus. A year and a half ago, those ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.