The California Solar Initiative's RD&D Program has now concluded after operating since 2008 through 2016. All solicitations and research projects are now complete.



 Program overview + Research briefs       

 [25 MB ]
 Program overview  [13 MB ]

 Research briefs  (high resolution)                     

 [44 MB ]

For more information on the research projects and resulting reports please review the section below. All completed final reports are also available separately for review and download. 

FINAL REPORTS for completed projects along with individual research briefs can be found here.


CSI RD&D Program - Program Evaluation 



 Report Summary       

 [277 KB ]
 Final Report  [3 MB ]


 [4 MB ]


Funded Projects

This is a database of projects funded by the CSI RD&D. The project summaries are listed alphabetically below. You may also choose a subset of projects by clicking a keyword, or using the search function.

Advanced Modeling and Verification for High Penetration PV

Clean Power Research

Current Highlights:

Final Project Report: Advanced Modeling and Verification for High Penetration PV. Hoff, T.E. Clean Power Research. April 2012. PDF (2.5 MB)

Project Information

Contact Information

Principal Investigator Name: Thomas E. Hoff
Principal Investigator Email: tomhoff @ cleanpower.com
Principal Investigator Phone: 707-224-9992
Grant Manager Name: Smita Gupta
Grant Manager Email: smita.gupta @ itron.com
Grant Manager Phone: 509-891-3189

Project Summary

This project developed several different tools and products that will help utilities address issues related to integrating high penetration photovoltaics (PV) into the electric grid. Specifically, the project addresses the following issues identified in the Planning & Modeling for High-Penetration PV target area: Improved Online Solar Radiation Datasets, PV Model Validation, High Penetration PV T&D Model Integration, and Optimal Location Selection.

This project accomplished the following specific tasks:
  • Enhanced the spatial and temporal resolution of SolarAnywhere, the online satellite-based irradiance dataset. This enables the use of these high temporal and spatial resolution data in the various forecasting and planning tools needed to address high penetration of solar.

  • Extended the capabilities of PVSimulator to include output variability and validate PV performance forecasts using two existing circuits with PV high-penetration in California. This will enable better forecasting in planning tools used by utilities.

  • Integrated PV modeling capabilities with the Distribution Engineering Workstation distribution engineering and analysis tool. This allows system planners to model the effects of cloud transients, bi-directional load flows, and the attributes of today's advanced inverter technologies.

  • Created a PV value assessment tool that takes technical inputs from the distribution planning process and calculates the economic value of a specific PV fleet configuration. This enables the distribution planner to optimize the trade-offs and identify the optimal locations of PV systems.

The tools and data streams developed as part of this work are available for public use by California installers, manufacturers, agencies, utilities, and others.

Deliverables and Documents


Final Project Report: Advanced Modeling and Verification for High Penetration PV. Hoff, T.E. Clean Power Research. April 2012. PDF (2.5 MB)

Preliminary Results
Pending Patents
  • Computer-Implemented System and Method for Estimating Power Data for a Photovoltaic Power Generation Fleet.

  • Computer-Implemented System and Method for Determining Point-to-Point Correlation of Sky Clearness for Photovoltaic Power Generation Fleet Output Estimation.

  • Computer-Implemented System and Method for Efficiently Performing Area-to-Point Conversion of Satellite Imagery for Photovoltaic Power Generation Fleet Output Estimation.


  • Final Project webinar presentation April 2012 PDF

  • Webinar presenting final project results ( wmv file ) (82 MB)



  • SolarAnywhere - Data for 2003-2011 in select areas of California will be made freely available through this grant funding as it becomes available.

  • California high resolution solar data http://ca.solaranywhere.com (1 km grid 30 min interval)

Project Activities


April 2010  Project started
April 2010

SolarAnywherewebportal for solar radiation data launched

November 2010

Quantifying PV Power Output Variability

Publication in:
Solar Energy
Volume 84, Issue 10, October 2010, Pages 1782-1793
High resolution solar radiation data for California available on 1 km grid at 30 min time interval. The data is available free of charge sponsored by CSI RD&D grant and available starting Jan 2003 through one year prior from the current date. Updates will be available through the term of the grant which ends April 2012.

December 2010 The range for solar data available as funded through this grant is: Jan 1, 2003 through Mar 31, 2011
January 2011 Press release
SolarAnywhere® ER Helps CA Gear-Up for High-Penetration PV
February 2011 VoteSolar webinar on PV Power Output Variability 
April 2012
Webinar to present the final project results

Project Links

Tags: Data , Solar Forecasting