Published March 16, 2023 | Version 1.0
Dataset Open

One year of high-precision operational data including measurement uncertainties from a large-scale solar thermal collector array with flat plate collectors, located in Graz, Austria

  • 1. AEE INTEC
  • 2. Forschung Burgenland
  • 3. SOLID Solar Energy Systems GmbH



  • High-precision measurement data acquired within a scientific research project, using high-quality measurement equipment and implementing extensive data quality assurance measures.
  • The dataset includes data from one full operational year in a 1-minute sampling rate, covering all seasons.
  • Measured data channels include global, beam and diffuse irradiances in horizontal and collector plane. Heat transfer fluid properties were determined in a dedicated laboratory test.
  • In addition to the measured data channels, calculated data channels, such as thermal power output, mass flow, fluid properties, solar incidence angle and shadowing masks are provided to facilitate further analysis.
  • Uncertainties of data channels are provided based on data sheet specifications and GUM error propagation.
  • The dataset refers to a real-scale application which is representative of typical large-scale solar thermal plant designs (flat plate collectors, common hydraulic layout).
  • Additional information is provided in a "Data in Brief" journal article:


Collector array description: The data is from a flat plate collector array with a total gross collector area of 516 m2 (361 kW nominal thermal power). The array consists of four parallel collector rows with a common inlet and outlet manifold. Large-area flat-plate collectors from Arcon-Sunmark A/S are used in the plant. Collectors are all oriented towards the south (180°), have a tilt angle of 30° and a row spacing of 3.1 m. The collector array is part of a large-scale solar thermal plant located at Fernheizwerk Graz, Austria (latitude: 47.047294 N, longitude: 15.436366 E). The plant feeds into the local district heating network and is one of the largest Solar District Heating installations in Central Europe.


Data files:

  • FHW_ArcS__main__2017.csv – This is the main dataset. It is advised to use this file for further analysis. The file contains the full time series of all measured and all calculated data channels and their (propagated) measurement uncertainty (53 data channels in total). Calculated data channels are derived from measured channels (see script below) and have the suffix __calc in their channel names. Uncertainty information is given in terms of standard deviation of a normal distribution (suffix __std); some data channels are assumed to have no uncertainty (e.g., sun azimuth or shadowing).
  • FHW_ArcS__main__2017.parquet – Same as FHW_ArcS__main__2017.csv, but in parquet file format for smaller file size and improved performance when loading the dataset in software.
  • FHW_ArcS__parameters.json – Contains various metadata about the dataset, in both human and machine-readable format. Includes plant parameters, data channel descriptions, physical units, etc.
  • FHW_ArcS__raw__2017.csv – Dataset with time series of all measured data channels and their measurement uncertainty. The main dataset FHW_ArcS__main__2017.csv, which includes all calculated data channels, is a superset of this file.



  • – This Python script exposes the calculation process of the calculated data channels (suffix __calc), including error propagation. The main calculations are defined as functions in the module
  • – This Python script, together with, generates several figures based on the main dataset.


Data collection and preparation: AEE — Institute for Sustainable Technologies (AEE INTEC), Feldgasse 19, 8200 Gleisdorf, Austria; and SOLID Solar Energy Systems GmbH (SOLID), Am Pfangberg 117, 8045 Graz, Austria


Data owner: Energiecontracting GmbH, Puchstrasse 85, 8020 Graz, Austria


Additional information is provided in a journal article in "Data in Brief", titled "One year of high-precision operational data including measurement uncertainties from a large-scale solar thermal collector array with flat plate collectors in Graz, Austria".


Note: A Gitlab repository is associated with this dataset, intended as a companion to facilitate maintenance of the Python code that is provided along with the data. If you want to use or contribute to the code, please do so using the Gitlab project:




Files (790.5 MB)

Name Size Download all
422.6 MB Preview Download
145.6 MB Download
15.0 kB Preview Download
222.3 MB Preview Download
4.8 kB Download
767 Bytes Download
11.0 kB Download
17.4 kB Download