The test site is primarily suited for solar energy technology. The site includes three south-facing “bays” where solar photovoltaic, solar thermal devices etc can be tested in the environment (Latitude 56° N, Longitude 3°W) to make either direct comparison with other technologies and/or by reference to a fully instrumented weather station. Each bay is serviced by both an electrical and a water supply and data acquisition is housed in small enclosures. Available data acquisition includes multiple temperature, voltage and current measurements. For solar thermal applications, water pumping and draw off to match typical household or industrial demand curves can be automated. The weather station monitors wind speed and direction, air temperature and humidity, solar irradiation and report at 10 minute intervals.
The test site is modelled using Polysun Software which can be used to predict the performance of either standard or bespoke solar technology. The software takes local meteorological data as an input and the results of the model, once verified with the experimental testing are a useful tool to predict performance over a wider range of operating parameters. The site is also serviced regularly by the SISER (Scottish Institute of Solar Energy Research) Technologist.