Soiling in Solar Energy Systems: The Role of the Thresholding Method in Image Analysis

Journal article


Karim, M. 2023. Soiling in Solar Energy Systems: The Role of the Thresholding Method in Image Analysis. Solar RRL. pp. 1-14. https://doi.org/10.1002/solr.202300654
AuthorsKarim, M.
Abstract

The use of image analysis has often been suggested as a practical way to monitor the soiling accumulated on the surfaces of solar energy conversion devices. Indeed, the deposited soiling particles can be counted and characterized to calculate the area they cover, and this area can be converted into an energy loss. However, several particle counting methodologies exist and can lead to dissimilar results. This work focuses on the role of thresholding, an essential step where particles are distinguished from a background based on the pixel brightness. Sixteen automatic thresholding methods are assessed using 13 200 micrographs of glass coupons soiled at nine locations globally. In low-to-intermediate soiling conditions, the “Triangle” method is found to return the minimum coefficient of variation and a mean deviation closer to zero. On the other hand, methods assuming a bimodal distribution of pixel brightness underestimate the area coverage. In addition, since soiling can be unevenly distributed over a surface, different loss estimations can be returned when the same image analysis process is used on different spots on a sample's surface. For these reasons, image analysis should be repeated at multiple locations on each investigated surface.

Keywordssolar energy conversion devices; image analysis ; deposited soiling particles
Year2023
JournalSolar RRL
Journal citationpp. 1-14
PublisherWiley
ISSN2367-198X
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1002/solr.202300654
Web address (URL)https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/solr.202300654
Publisher's version
License
File Access Level
Open
Output statusPublished
Publication dates
Online23 Nov 2023
Publication process dates
Deposited24 Jan 2024
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https://repository.derby.ac.uk/item/q434v/soiling-in-solar-energy-systems-the-role-of-the-thresholding-method-in-image-analysis

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