The HOMER Powering Health Tool
The HOMER Powering Health Tool is an online model to create initial designs of electric power systems for health care facilities that have no other power supply or have grid electricity available for a predictable period of hours each day. The tool is intended for project managers, engineers and financiers in the energy industry to simplify the design process for such systems. The tool models optimal combinations of power supply options to meet electrical loads of a health facility at least cost based on the given inputs. It compares combinations of grid electricity (if available), batteries (lithium-ion or lead-acid), solar photovoltaics (PV), and generator sets fueled by diesel, gasoline or propane. The model runs entirely online and can be used an unlimited number of times with no need to sign in or download software.
How to use the tool?
Read the guidance note (Word, PDF) for important information on using the tool, including in context of health care facilities responding to COVID-19. Follow the steps below to input data on local energy costs and health care facility electrical loads.
- Location and Time Zone – Use the map to indicate your approximate location.[more info]
- Power Assumptions – The values that are shown are simply default values. The user is encouraged to enter local values for cost and availability of the electric grid and on-site power generation equipment.[more info]
- Financial Assumptions – Enter the Real Interest rate.[more info]
- Electric Load Inputs – Enter the type and number of electrical devices used in the health facility and the time of day they are used. Select one of four health facility tiers as a starting point and the quantity of devices and hours of use can be then adjusted or entered manually. [more info]
- Click the ‘Run HOMER®’ button at the bottom of the webpage. – [more info]
Note: The results will appear as a new page if your browser allows pop-ups or you will have the opportunity to open the results in a new page by clicking on a link after the calculation is complete.
- The new page will provide a table of optimized configurations ranked low to high based on the cost per unit of electricity over the project lifetime. Results will include configurations for PV-battery, PV-battery-backup generator, battery-generator, and generator only (for comparison).
- From the new page, you can select a configuration for detailed results based on the given inputs. The HOMER Pro output file for the simulation can also be downloaded for users with HOMER Pro desktop application.
- To run a new simulation, you can either load the tool again and start from the default parameters, or you may exit out of the pop-up linking the simulation results and you may start from your recently calculated inputs.