LBNL Report Number
Non-residential sectors offer many promising applications for electrical storage (batteries) and photovoltaics (PVs). However, choosing and operating storage under complex tariff structures poses a daunting technical and economic problem that may discourage potential customers and result in lost carbon and economic savings. Equipment vendors are unlikely to provide adequate environmental analysis or unbiased economic results to potential clients, and are even less likely to completely describe the robustness of choices in the face of changing fuel prices and tariffs. Given these considerations, researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) have designed the Storage Viability and Optimization Web Service (SVOW): a tool that helps building owners, operators and managers to decide if storage technologies and PVs merit deeper analysis. SVOW is an open access, web-based energy storage and PV analysis calculator, accessible by secure remote login. Upon first login, the user sees an overview of the parameters: load profile, tariff, technologies, and solar radiation location. Each parameter has a pull-down list of possible predefined inputs and users may upload their own as necessary. Since the non-residential sectors encompass a broad range of facilities with fundamentally different characteristics, the tool starts by asking the users to select a load profile from a limited cohort group of example facilities. The example facilities are categorized according to their North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code. After the load profile selection, users select a predefined tariff or use the widget to create their own. The technologies and solar radiation menus operate in a similar fashion. After these four parameters have been inputted, the users have to select an optimization setting as well as an optimization objective. The analytic engine of SVOW is LBNL's Distributed Energy Resources Customer Adoption Model (DER-CAM), which is a mixed-integer linear program (MILP) written and executed in the General Algebraic Modeling System (GAMS) optimization software.