Study: Increasing addition of rooftop PV systems with small tilt angles in east-west direction in Germany

Shares of the various orientations in plant construction.

The relative share of newly added solar systems in Germany with less than 10 kilowatts (kW) of capacity has remained constant at around 82 percent since 2014. However, in terms of total annual capacity additions, their share averages only 19 percent. From a capacity addition perspective, the share of large rooftop systems (100 to 750 kW) was 17 percent in 2012 and increased to 38 percent by 2019. The importance of ground-mounted systems is decreasing from 45 percent in 2012 to 20 percent in 2019, according to a brief study by the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE.
Fraunhofer ISE's analysis covers the period from 2000 to the present and shows the development over time in terms of number, capacity, location by federal state, orientation, inclination, as well as capacity limitation, according to the scientists.
The two German states of Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg accounted for an average of 59.6 percent of new plant additions between 2000 and 2009, and that share declined to 43 percent in the year 2019. During the same periods, North Rhine-Westphalia increased its average contribution from 14.1 to 18.3 percent, Lower Saxony's share rose from 6.5 to 9.2 percent, and Brandenburg's share increased from 0.7 to 2.2 percent. All the remaining German states also saw increases, the researchers said. Despite the decline in their share, Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg remain in first and second place in terms of plant additions in 2019, with 24.4 percent and 18.6 percent, respectively, followed by North Rhine-Westphalia, Lower Saxony and Hesse with 17.9 percent, 9.2 percent and 6.1 percent, respectively.
New plants with a southern orientation had a share of 61 percent in 2000, which decreased to 42 percent by 2019, while the share of plants with an eastern and western orientation increased to almost the same extent. Moreover, according to Fraunhofer ISE, new installations (rooftop and ground-mounted systems) are increasingly being built with an inclination angle of less than 20 degrees. Plants with 20 to 40 degrees of tilt accounted for an average of 63 percent between 2000 and 2009, falling to 54 percent between 2010 and 2019.

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