Effects of broken glass covers examined

By helping many engineers enhance their wide range of knowledge and management knowhow, the association aims to strengthen service models that totally support O&M (operation and maintenance) of solar power plants including not only grid connection facilities but also solar panels and maximize power generation.

The "performance diagnosis of solar cell modules" consists of thermal image diagnosis, I-V characteristics, bypass diode check and report writing. The "prior-to-use self-check" consists of load rejection test, temperature rise test, harmonic measurement and integrated interlock test. The "response to the abnormalities of solar cell modules" consists of direct-current (DC) ground fault test, blocking diode, bypass diode and blocking fuse. The "response to the abnormalities of PV inverters" includes examples of erroneous operation of isolated operation detectors and temperature control of PV inverters. They were practiced by using actual facilities and inspection equipment.

The facilities of the "Hoan Solar" solar power plant, which the association built and runs for training, has an enhanced training effect. For example, products of several manufacturers were installed so that it becomes possible to learn with different types of facilities at one site (See related article).

For the plant, Solar Frontier KK's CIS-based solar panels and Sharp Corp's monocrystalline silicon solar panels, which have been adopted for many mega solar plants in Japan, were employed. The PV inverters employed for the plant include a product of Toshiba Mitsubishi-Electric Industrial Systems Corp (TMEIC), which has the largest share of the market for PV inverters for mega solar plants.

Also, at the plant, there are (1) solar panels whose broken glass covers have not been repaired, (2) panels that use shaded cells, (3) purposely-loosened cables connecting panels, etc. And they are used to learn what kinds of problems can be caused by them, in the aim of enhancing the training effect.

Broken glass covers are left unrepaired to check their state and influence on the amount of power generation. (source: Nikkei BP)

Cables between panels were loosened to monitor changes in their state. (source: Nikkei BP)