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An Evaluation of Financial Incentive Policies for Solar Photovoltaic Systems in the U.S.

[+] Author Affiliations
Jian Zhang, Alta Knizley, Heejin Cho

Mississippi State University, Mississippi State, MS

Paper No. ES2017-3693, pp. V001T06A001; 10 pages
doi:10.1115/ES2017-3693
From:
  • ASME 2017 11th International Conference on Energy Sustainability collocated with the ASME 2017 Power Conference Joint With ICOPE-17, the ASME 2017 15th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, and the ASME 2017 Nuclear Forum
  • ASME 2017 11th International Conference on Energy Sustainability
  • Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, June 26–30, 2017
  • Conference Sponsors: Advanced Energy Systems Division, Solar Energy Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5759-5
  • Copyright © 2017 by ASME

abstract

This paper analyzes some of the existing incentives for solar photovoltaic (PV) energy generation in the U.S. to investigate how effectively those existing incentive policies can promote PV adaptions in the U.S. market. Two common building types (i.e., hospitals and large hotels) located in five different U.S. states, each having their own incentives, are selected and analyzed for the PV incentive policies. The payback period of the PV system is chosen as an indicator to analyze and critique the effectiveness of each incentive by comparing the payback periods before and after taking the incentive into consideration. In this way, the existing incentive policies implemented by utility companies in each state are analyzed and critiqued. Finally, a parametric analysis is conducted to determine the influence of the variation in key parameters, such as PV system capacity and PV capital cost, on the performance of PV system. The results show how the existing incentives can be effectively used to promote the PV systems in the U.S. and how variations of the parameters can impact the payback period of the PV systems. Through the evaluation of the existing incentive policies and the parametric study, this paper demonstrates that the type and level of incentives should be carefully determined in policy-making processes to effectively promote the PV systems.

Copyright © 2017 by ASME

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