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Estimation of Incoming Solar Energy Budget at the Horizontal Surface of the Earth in the Foothills of the Northern Indian Himalaya

Author Affiliations

  • 1Department of Physics, Government Senior Secondary School Manali, District Kullu, Himachal Pradesh, INDIA
  • 2 Department of Physics, Government Postgraduate College, Kullu, INDIA

Res. J. Physical Sci., Volume 1, Issue (4), Pages 1-6, May,4 (2013)

Abstract

The accurate information of solar energy budget distribution at a particular geographical location is essential in prediction of climate studies, and design and development of solar energy devices. This paper presents the status of incoming solar energy budget at the horizontal surface of the Earth in the foothills of the northern Indian Himalaya during October 2012. The distribution of incoming solar energy budget estimated using well known empirical models. The empirical models run taking into account sunshine hours, solar declination angle, geographic latitude of the observation site, the eccentricity correction factor and the sunset hour angle as main parameters of the study. The monthly average value of the total solar energy budget incident at top of the atmosphere and the Earth's surface estimated 326 Wm-2 d-1 and 165 Wm-2 d-1, respectively. The study confirms that the upper part of the Kullu valley in the northern Indian Himalaya is an ideal site for harvesting solar energy. The economic feasibility analysis in term of harness solar energy suggests that by popularizing the use of solar energy devices through awareness campaigns, we can solve a part of energy demand and thereby can reduce the dependency on non-renewable sources of energy.

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