The SP-215 is an amplified sensor with a 0-5 volt output and exhibits excellent cosine response.
All Apogee pyranometers incorporate a silicon-cell photodiode that measures total shortwave radiation with a sensor housing design that features a fully potted, domed-shaped head making the sensor fully weatherproof and self-cleaning. Total shortwave radiation is an important component in determining evapo-transpiration rates, energy balance, net radiation as well as monitoring solar power panels.
Solar radiation at Earth’s surface is typically defined as total radiation across a wavelength range of 280 to 4000nm (shortwave radiation). Total solar radiation, direct beam and diffuse, incident on a horizontal surface is defined as global shortwave radiation, or shortwave irradiance (incident radiant flux), and is expressed in Watts per square meter (W m-2, equal to Joules per second per square meter).
Pyranometers are sensors that measure global shortwave radiation. Apogee SP series pyranometers are silicon-cell pyranometers, and are only sensitive to a portion of the solar spectrum, approximately 350-1100nm (approximately 80% of total shortwave radiation is within this range). However, silicon-cell pyranometers are calibrated to estimate total shortwave radiation across the entire solar spectrum. Silicon-cell pyranometer specifications compare favourably to specifications for World Meteorological Organisation (WMO) moderate and good quality classifications, but because of limited spectral sensitivity, they do not meet the spectral specification necessary for WMO or ISO certification.
Typical applications of silicon-cell pyranometers include incoming shortwave radiation measured in agricultural, ecological, and hydrological weather networks, and solar panel arrays.
Apogee Instruments SP series pyranometers consist of a cast acrylic diffuser (filter), photodiode, and signal processing circuitry mounted in an anodised aluminium housing, and a cable to connect the sensor to a measurement device. Sensors are potted solid with no internal air space and are designed for continuous total shortwave radiation measurement on a planar surface in outdoor environments. SP series sensors output an analogue voltage that is directly proportional to total shortwave radiation from the sun. The voltage signal from the sensor is directly proportional to radiation incident on a planar surface (does not have to be horizontal), where the radiation emanates from all angles of a hemisphere.