Universidad de Costa Rica

A simple methodology for estimating battery lifetimes in Solar Home System design

Ing. Víctor Vega Garita, PhD.
Nishant Narayan and Thekla Papakosta and Victor Vega-Garita and Jelena Popovic-Gerber and Pavol Bauer and Miro Zeman


The proliferation of Solar Home Systems (SHS) in recent times hopes to provide an alleviating solution to the global problem of energy poverty. Battery is usually the most expensive but important part of an SHS; it is also normally the first part to fail. Estimating the battery lifetime can help make informed system design choices, and it is therefore an important exercise for an SHS designer. Battery lifetime modelling is often a complex task requiring empirical data or reliance on modelling cell level electrochemical phenomena. This paper presents a simple battery lifetime estimation method specific to the application and candidate battery choices at hand. An SHS application specific simulation is carried out for a year and the effect of microcycles on the battery activity is analyzed. The concept of active Depth-of-Discharge (DOD) is introduced. Cyclic ageing of the battery is thus quantified and relative cycle lives of 2 …

© 2020 Escuela de Ingeniería Eléctrica, Universidad de Costa Rica.