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This point is drawn from a paper about how many analysis of grid integration of sustainable, renewable power both exaggerate the problem and lay the blame for the inflexibility of "baseload" production at the feet of the sustainable, renewable power, when the inflexibility is the fault of the baseload power generator.
From the perspective of a member of a sustainable, renewable portfolio, the greatest benefit of solar PV is in the provision of peak power, and in most countries, the daily average power peak tracks the peak of daily average solar availability.
So the problem of optimizing a fixed location for delivery of power for sale to the grid is a different problem from optimizing a fixed location for delivery of power to a bank of batteries in an off-grid installation.
Even with a simple rotator tracking system, the optimal vertical angle of the solar array for the power needs of the grid may well not be the same as if optimizing total power delivery.
In other words, the assumptions by which simulations maximize simulated power production by the solar cells may also simultaneously make the challenge of integrating the solar cells into grid supply more difficult than it need be. A reorientation that improves the value of the power supply to the grid would reduce the individual EROI but either, if it allows less fossil fuel back-up, reduce total climate impact or, if it allows less storage to be used, increase the total EROI of the sustainable, renewable, energy portfolio.
I've been accused of being a Marxist, yet while Harpo's my favourite, it's Groucho I'm always quoting. Odd, that.
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