Review of economic assessment of hybrid photovoltaic-diesel-battery power systems for residential loads for different provinces of Saudi Arabia

S. M. Shaahid*, L. M. Al-Hadhrami, M. K. Rahman

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

69 Scopus citations


Presently, the world is considering renewable solar energy as an indispensable/long-term/nature-friendly option for power generation. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (K.S.A) is blessed with considerable amount of solar radiation. Commercial/residential buildings in K.S.A. consume about 10-45% of the total electric energy. In the present paper, the economic analysis of utilization of hybrid PV-diesel-battery power systems to meet the load of a typical residential building (with annual electrical energy demand of 35,120 kWh) in different provinces/zones of K.S.A. has been studied by analyzing long-term solar radiation data. Five geographically distinct sites representing different provinces of the Kingdom have been selected. The monthly average daily solar radiation of K.S.A. varies from 3.03-7.51 kWh/m2. NREL's (HOMER Energy's) HOMER software has been employed to perform the analysis. The simulation results indicate that for a hybrid system composed of 4 kWp PV system together with 10 kW diesel system and a battery storage of 3 h of autonomy (equivalent to three hours of average load), the PV penetration is 22%., 21%, 22%, 20%, and 20% at Abha (Southern Province), Hofuf (Eastern Province), Qurayat (Northern Province), Taif (Western Province), and Riyadh (Central Province) respectively. The cost of generating energy (COE, US$/kWh) from the above hybrid system has been found to be 0.179 $/kWh, 0.179 $/kWh, 0.178 $/kWh, 0.180 $/kWh, and 0.181 $/kWh at Abha, Hofuf, Qurayat, Taif, and Riyadh respectively. For a given hybrid system, the PV penetration is higher in Sourthern and Northern Province as compared to other provinces. Also, the study has examined the impact of PV penetration on: carbon emissions (Tons/year), diesel fuel consumption, Net Present Cost, cost of energy, etc. Furthermore, for a given hybrid configuration (for Northern Province), the study exhibits that increase in PV capacity results in decrease in the diesel-fuel-consumption/carbon-emissions and increase in COE./NPC/excess-energy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)174-181
Number of pages8
JournalRenewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews
StatePublished - Mar 2014

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors acknowledge the support of the Research Institute of the King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, Dhahran, Saudi Arabia . The authors are very thankful to NREL and HOMER Energy for making available freely HOMER software for design of electric power systems. The authors extend special thanks to Dr. Tom Lambert and Dr. Peter Lilienthal for their support/effort and cooperation in reviewing HOMER files.


  • Battery
  • Carbon emissions
  • Diesel generators
  • PV modules
  • Residential loads
  • Solar irradiance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment


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