The US National Renewable Energy Laboratory examined five-year data to observe the most common system failure points and how to prevent them. Researchers considered residential, commercial and utility scale plants and found interesting results. While failures cannot be avoided completely, a key takeaway was that close monitoring and timely repair can effectively mitigate the financial effects of failures.
The U.S. tracker provider has launched NX Navigator, a control system it says offers improved monitoring across a range of weather conditions. The company claims the software enables PV plant operators to schedule maintenance operations such as cleaning and mowing.
Mathematicians at Canada’s University of Waterloo who turned their attention to solar power have developed an algorithm they say offers better control over PV plant output. The researchers estimate the algorithm could improve the output of a 100 MW power plant by almost a million kilowatt-hours per year.
pv magazine’s Quality Roundtable at the 2018 Renewable Energy India (REI) Expo, took place in front of a packed audience. It discussed current problem areas in the India solar industry; how solar developers and solution providers can improve the quality of PV installations; and innovative financial instruments to reduce the cost of debt and scale up infrastructure investment.
Spanish inverter maker Ingeteam has reported a massive order to supply Mexican projects, which it claims will increase its O&M services to cover 55% of the countries solar PV installations. Supply contracts are mostly related to central inverters, although string devices, as well as LV/MV transformers, MV cells, and LV switchgear are also included in the deals.
The U.S. National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has launched a new software package, developed alongside SunPower and kWh Analytics, which it says will improve the accuracy and reliability of PV plant performance data, and improve the industry’s understanding of degradation.
With its latest acquisition, Germany-based Enovos now manages large-scale PV systems amounting to around 600 MW in Germany. Financial details of the transaction have not been disclosed.
Troubleshooting in solar plants requires not only trying to find a diagnosis of why the performance ratio is reduced, but also to localize faulty modules. In a recent pv magazine webinar, experts discussed four troubleshooting cases and explored whether module-resolved monitoring would help reduce the effort, and thereby decrease LCOE.
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