Italian inverter maker Fimer unveiled today two new products for the large scale segment – a high-power, multi-MPPT string inverter and modular conversion solution designed to supply both decentralized and centralized systems.
The new PVS-350, with a power of 350 kVA and an efficiency of over 99% is, according to the company, the most powerful string multi-MPPT inverter (350 kVA) with the highest power density in the solar industry. The device can perform string diagnostics through the online analysis of I-V curves.
According to Fimer, the inverter's capacity and the power-to-weight ratio enable savings of up to 30% in transportation and installation costs, and up to 15% more AC capacity for medium-voltage stations compared to other decentralized conversion solutions available today. This means fewer stations per megawatt (AC) of installed power, with a cumulative saving that can exceed €0.02/W in a 100 MW system.
The input characteristics of the multi-MPPT inverter have been optimized to take full advantage of the benefits of high-power crystalline modules with 182mm and 210mm cells, allowing for additional cost savings at the level of the system ranging from €0.05 to €0.09/W compared to systems designed with conventional modules based on 166x166mm cells.
For centralized system configurations, which currently represent almost 40% of the market, Fimer launched the PVS-260/PVS-300, a completely modular solution designed with a single MPPT configuration.
The company said this solution can easily replace central inverters in more traditional designs, significantly improving performance and reducing BoP costs – optimizing LCOE – achieving a 2.3% reduction in LCOE with a modular conversion configuration, compared to a central solution. It also has higher system availability, over 99.9%, compared to a 99.5% maximum for central solutions; and record power density and power capacity, two times more than any inverter of this kind available on the market, which means fewer drives to install the same MVA capacity.
The manufacturer also explained that the PVS-260/PVS-300 has a large capacity combined with a unique MPPT power pack of super-compact design, which allows developers to maintain a “centralized” system configuration if they prefer. All power electronics are also concentrated close to the other critical AC power elements to simplify control and routine maintenance.
The device is claimed to have lower operating and maintenance costs, which the manufacturer estimates at €0.013/W less than the central solutions for 25 years, thanks to the granularity of the energy conversion achieved with smaller, interchangeable power blocks. Moreover, the combination of six to 24 inverter modules in two units is said to increase the capacity of the 40-foot, medium-voltage compact skid, available in different versions with power between 1,560 kVA and 7,200 kVA.
“By combining the power modules in a factory-tested and pre-assembled medium-voltage station, the new platform can compete with the multi-megawatt utility scale station designs of the latest central inverters, allowing designers to apply the modular configuration to systems of any size,” explained the manufacturer.
“While the shift from central inverters to string inverter technologies in the utility scale sector has increased in the last five years, Fimer recognizes that centralized configurations still prevail.” For this reason, the company added “it has developed the inverters PVS-350 and the PVS-260/PVS-300 modular conversion platforms, to serve both decentralized and centralized applications.”
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