• Sthitapragyan Mohanty

What are Energy Efficiency Indicators?

Updated: Aug 17

Energy efficiency is not a self-contained phrase that, by nature, applies a comparison. It has meaning only when correlating two systems that use energy. The system that produces more useful output for a given amount of energy input is the more efficient. Thus, we speak of an energy-efficient system that produces more of the output at hand than other systems. It is, then, an extensive term evaluating, perhaps, a set of indicators that address differences among more and less efficient technologies or practices.

Energy efficiency Indicators:

Such indicators are statistics that quantify how efficient energy is used in various activities. The efficiency indicators demonstrate information about the performance quality and whether the PV system components individually or the PV system overall is performing as per rating. Indicators such as PV module efficiency, inverter efficiency, system efficiency, capacity factors, and performance ratio come under this category.

Module efficiency

This is an indicator that readily notifies the operating condition of the PV module where it is defined as the ratio of the DC energy generated at the output terminals of the PV module or array to the energy available at the plane of the array due to incident solar irradiance.

Inverter efficiency

This is an indicator that readily informs the operating condition of the inverter where it is defined as the ratio of the AC energy generated at the output terminals of the inverter to the DC energy at the input terminals of the inverter.

System efficiency

This is an indicator that readily conveys the overall PV system efficiency where it is defined as the ratio of the AC energy inserted to the grid or load to the energy available at the plane of the array due to incident solar irradiance

Capacity factor (CF)

This is an indicator suggested for power generating units concerning specific operating time. In a PV system, this indicator is used to analyze the overall performance and is given as the ratio of the amount of generated energy by the PV plant to the operating time

Performance ratio (PR)

This implies the overall performance quality of the PV system considering all the effects that are involved in various stages of energy conversion in PV systems.

Objectives of Energy Efficiency Indicators

  • Organise information on energy consumption by collecting all the data to regulate energy efficiency in a country.

  • Help to comprehend trends in energy consumption and efficiency of energy.

  • Deliver market insights on the penetration of end-use equipment and energy-efficient technologies.

  • Benchmarking of efficiency performance of countries through cross-country comparisons, a crucial question in international negotiations on climate change.

  • Setting targets of efficiency for energy consumption.

  • Monitoring of the targets set at the national and international levels.

  • Policy monitoring to compute the impacts of measures to justify the public money spent to support these programmes and plan future measures and actions.

  • Measure the long term effect of measures as these indicators can feed the technical-economic demand forecasting models needed, which are characterized by a high level of disaggregation.

  • Boost the dissemination of the progress achieved on the targets through dedicated indicators and tools.

  • Finally, help to measure the multiple benefits of efficient energy sources

Utilizing the above indicators for high energy efficiency is one of the fastest, most cost-effective ways to save money, lessen greenhouse gas emissions, create jobs, and fulfil thriving energy demand.

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