For various applications it is necessary to know not only global solar radiation values, but also the diffuse and beam components. Because often only global values are available, there have been several models developed to establish correlations between the diffuse fraction and various predictors. These typically include the clearness index, but also may include the solar angle, temperature and humidity. The clearness index is the proportion of extraterrestrial radiation reaching a location, where the extraterrestrial value used in the calculation varies with latitude and time of year. These correlations have been developed using data principally from latitudes greater than 40°, often using only data from a few locations and with few exceptions have not used solar altitude as a predictor. Generally the data consist of hourly integrated values. A model has been developed using hourly data from a weather station set up at Deakin University, Geelong. Another model has also been developed for 15 minute data values in order to ascertain if the smoothing generated by using hourly data makes a significant difference to overall results. The construction of such models has been investigated, enabling an extension to the research, inclusive of other stations, to be performed systematically. A final investigation was carried out, using data from other Australian locations, to explain some of the considerable scatter by adding apparent solar time as a predictor, which proved to be significantly better than solar altitude.
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