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Easan Drury, Anthony Lopez, Paul Denholm and Robert Margolis Relative performance of tracking versus fixed tilt photovoltaic systems in the USA Progress in Photovoltaics: Research and Applications 22

Version of Record online: 4 APR 2013 | DOI: 10.1002/pip.2373

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Tracking systems actively orient photovoltaic (PV) modules to intercept more direct solar radiation, enabling tracking modules to generate more electricity than modules in fixed orientations. The increase in tracking PV system output, relative to fixed tilt systems, is highest in arid US regions than in regions with frequent and persistent cloud cover. We characterize the relationships between fixed and tracking PV costs that enable tracking systems to reduce the levelized cost of energy for PV systems in different US locations and explore how these cost relationships are likely to evolve as PV prices continue to decline.

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