Evaluation of wind and solar energy investments in Texas

Publication date: March 2019

Source: Renewable Energy, Volume 132

Author(s): Byungik Chang, Ken Starcher


The primary objective of the project is to evaluate the benefits of wind and solar energy and determine economical investment sites for wind and solar energy in Texas with economic parameters including payback periods. A 50 kW wind turbine system and a 42 kW PV system were used to collect field data. Data analysis enabled yearly energy production and payback period of the two systems.

The average payback period of a solar PV system was found to be within a range of 2–20 years because the large range of the payback period for PV systems were heavily influenced by incentives. This is in contrast to wind energy, where the most important factor was found to be wind resources of a region. Payback period for the installed wind system in Texas with federal tax credits was determined to be approximately 13 years.

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