Universidad de Costa Rica

Geo-information is power: Using geographical information systems to assess rooftop photovoltaics in Costa Rica

Ing. Jairo Quirós Tortós, PhD.
Jairo Quiros-Tortos and Gustavo Valverde and Andres Arguello and Luis Nando Ochoa
IEEE Power and Energy Magazine


Economies of scale, incentives, and technological advances have made photovoltaic (PV) systems more affordable and common in developed nations. In Latin America, however, cost and regulation are still barriers for their widespread adoption, particularly by residential and commercial customers. In Costa Rica, there has only recently been interest in rooftop PV systems thanks to a major pilot project carried out from 2010 to 2015 by the Costa Rican Institute of Electricity (Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, ICE), the administrator of the generation, the transmission system operator, and one of the eight distribution network operators (DNOs) who also supply electricity. The hundreds of installations involved in this project created the momentum needed by the local emerging PV industry to push for changes in the regulatory framework and demonstrate the economic benefits, given the …

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