Weather and local environment

Local weather can have a dramatic effect on the electricity production from a PV array.

The most obvious factor is the amount of sunlight hitting the panels, but air temperature, humidity and wind regime also play a role. Local environmental conditions and rainfall patterns affect the degree to which panels become dusty or otherwise fouled and this, of course, affects energy production.

To get a better understanding of the relationship between weather, its interaction with other environmental factors, and photovoltaic output, weather data is logged and stored.

The Live Data Feed shows the current sunlight level, the air temperature, humidity, wind speed and direction data gathered from a number of sensors around the St. Lucia campus.

The UQ School of Geography, Planning and Environmental Management also provides on-line access  to information from its weather station at St. Lucia.

This Weather & Local Environment web page outlines the effects of weather and local environment on the performance of PV arrays.