REopt Lite Training Video - Text Version
Below is the text version for the Module 2: REopt Lite Training Video.
Emma Elqvist So, we're now going to take a look at ReOpt Lite, which is a publicly available web tool that you can use to evaluate opportunities for PV and storage at your site. It identifies the sizes and dispatch strategies that minimize your cost of electricity.
You can access the tool through www.ReOpt.NREL.gov. And today I'm going to give you a demo so that you can see how the tool works.
So, the first thing you'll need to enter is the technologies that you want to evaluate. You can choose to look at just PV, just battery storage, or both. Both is the default selection, and that's what we're going to look at today. Next, you'll need to enter a few pieces of information about your site. This includes your site location. That information is used both for the PV resource data as well as the utility rate information.
Next, you'll need to enter information about your electric load profile. So, if you have hourly interval data from your utility, you can input that by selecting custom load profile.
If you don't have that, you can simulate your electric load based on your annual energy consumption and a building type that you can select. There are 17 options here based on DOE's commercial reference buildings. And finally, then, you'll need to select an electricity rate that applies to your site.
So, I'll go ahead and enter my information now for a location in Palmdale, California. And we're going to simulate this load profile based on a medium office that consumes about one million kilowatt hours per year. And finally we're going to select a rate from the dropdown menu here. And the rates here come from the utility rate database. You can click on the link here to access more information about this rate, including demand charges, timely use rates, fixed charges, and other information.
So, that's all the information you would need to run an analysis. But there are more inputs required for this model, and those are right now pre-populated with default inputs.
So, for example, right now the discount rate here is set to 8.1 percent, but if you knew that the discount rate that you were expecting was 10 percent, you can go in here and overwrite that value. So, now I'm going to click results.
So, ReOpt is an optimization model and it tries to find the optimal combination of PV and storage and the dispatch strategy for that storage system in order to minimize the cost of electricity. And because there's 1,000 possible solutions, it can take about a minute or so to run. So, now we have our results for the site. So, we'll look at these. The first thing that the model recommends to you is the size of the PV and battery system. So, in this case, we're looking at a 320 kw PV system size along with a 67 kw 150 kilowatt hour battery size. And if this particular site were to install these technologies, they could expect to save about $176,000 over the 25 year analysis period.
Next, we'll scroll down to look at the dispatch plot. And so, this chart right here shows you what the technologies are doing on an hourly basis. So, you can see that the PV system in red here is producing electricity during the day, and that the battery system in blue here is dispatching in the late afternoon when the PV system isn't producing electricity anymore, but the time of use rate is still pretty high. The grid electricity here, what you're still purchasing from your utility, is shown in gray. And you can see a pretty distinct level here or plateau. And that's the model setting your new demand level for the month.
You can then scroll down to get a little bit more detailed information about these results. Here we're comparing the business as usual case, which is what you would expect to pay if you didn't install these technologies compared to the optimal case recommended by the model. And finally, we can look at the difference between those two. You can look at things like your energy costs compared to your demand costs and fixed charges, both in year one and over the life cycle of the analysis. And finally the net present value or the savings over the 25 year analysis period. These are also detailed in the preforma spreadsheet, which you can click here to download in an Excel spreadsheet.
Finally, we're going to look at what the system can do for you should the grid go down. And so, here we're calculating for every hour of the year, if the grid were to go down, how long would this PV and storage system be able to sustain your load. The average amount of hours is seven, and it ranges between zero and 26 hours, depending on what time of day the outage happens. So, this chart shows the probability of sustaining an outage compared to the duration of that outage. So, we can see here that you have an 89 percent chance of surviving an outage of one hour. However, you only have a 75 percent chance of surviving an outage of two hours. And that percentage continues to decrease as the length of the outage gets larger.
So, that concludes our demo of ReOpt Lite for today. We're still continuing to develop this tool and add new features. If you have any questions or if you want to send any feedback about the tool and your experience using it, please don't hesitate to contact us. You can send an email here as well as access the help document.