Electrical energy balance contest in Solar Decathlon Europe 2012
Solar Decathlon Europe (SDE) is an international multidisciplinary competition in which 20 university teams build and operate energy-efficient solar-powered houses. The aim of SDE is not only scientific but also educational and divulgative, making visitors to understand the problems presented by real engineering applications and architecture. From a research perspective, the energy data gathered during the competition constitutes a very promising information for the analysis and understanding of the photovoltaic systems, grid structures, energy balances and energy efficiency of the set of houses. This article focuses on the electrical energy components of SDE competition, the energy performance of the houses and the strategies and behaviors followed by the teams. The rules evaluate the houses' electrical energy self-sufficiency by looking at the electricity autonomy in terms of aggregated electrical energy balance; the temporary generation-consumption profile pattern correlation; and the use of electricity per measurable area. Although the houses are evaluated under the same climatological and consumption conditions, production results are very different due to the specific engineering solutions (different electrical topologies, presence or absence of batteries, diverse photovoltaic module solutions, etc.). (C) 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.