SMA Knowledge Base

For the convenient access to all publications on SMA technologies or the use of SMA products.

Operations & Maintenance for Maximum Energy Yield

Plant-wide operations and maintenance (O&M) has emerged as a necessary component of a healthy, productive and profitable PV system. In fact, a properly maintained solar plant can increase energy yield by up to 30 percent.

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Reactive power outside of feed-in operation with SUNNY CENTRAL 500CP XT - 900CP XT

Q at Night

The electricity grid has a fundamental need for reactive power and, in some cases, the requirement to avoid instabilities via reactive power feed-in. Sunny Central CP XT inverters by SMA Solar Technology AG satisfy this requirement and make reactive power available outside of the feed-in periods.

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Intelligent integration of photovoltaics into diesel systems to ensure a self-sufficient energy supply with enhanced efficiency

SMA Fuel Save Solution

Five hundred gigawatts (GW) of power from diesel gensets provide industrial companies with electricity worldwide. Diesel gensets are essential to power supplies both in regions with and without adequate grid infrastructure. Furthermore, in developing and newly industrialized countries that have shown strong economic growth, the International Energy Agency (IEA) has forecasted an increase in the primary energy demand.

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A photovoltaic system rarely operates under constant ambient conditions because the sun’s radiation values change based on the weather and the time of day. Since the solar inverter manages the output of the entire PV system, it must react immediately to these changes.

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OptiTrac Global Peak

It is not always possible to prevent dormers, chimneys, or trees from casting their shadows over PV modules. However, to maintain the economic viability of a PV plant, installers and designers must minimize the loss of output due to shade in the planning phase.

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The Commercial Promise of 1,000 VDC PV Design

The U.S. commercial PV market is primed for significant growth. According to GTM Research, the official research arm of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the segment is expected to see a 25 percent annual compound growth rate from 2011 to 2016, clearly indicating the market’s potential.

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Emerging PV Markets

Investing in solar energy, especially PV power plants, offers the best development prospects in countries such as South Africa, India, Chile, Mexico and in the Middle East. This is due to each region’s significant increase in energy demand and the favorable climates.

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PV Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter

Section 690.11 of ANSI/NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® 2011 Edition (2011 NEC) sets new requirements for photovoltaic (PV) systems installed on or penetrating a building. These requirements apply to newly installed PV systems with a maximum voltage of 80 volts or greater.

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Grid Stability Through Intelligent PV Management

The global energy mix is undergoing a massive change, as the world looks to reduce its dependence on limited and pollution–causing fossil fuels. Solar power, clean and abundant, is a central character in this transition, but seamlessly integrating renewable energy into the public distribution grid has its own set of challenges.

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PV Inverter Performance in Desert-Like Locations

Extreme climate conditions like those found in desert-like regions make for high demands on solar technologies. Outdoor installed inverters are subjected to extreme temperature fluctuations and problematic sand and dust in the air.
SMA Solar Technology AG, the world leader in solar inverter technology and manufacturing, knows open-air equipment in particular, like SMA’s Sunny Central CP series, has to withstand these conditions, reliably performing for the operational life of the PV plant, which often exceeds 20 years.

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The Key Role of the Inverter in Project Risk Management

Assessing Bankability in Utility-Scale PV

Despite the hugely successful build-out of PV in Germany, Italy, Spain and the rest of Europe over the last 10 years, U.S. market investors continue to view PV as a higher-risk investment than other options for their capital. That opinion is held even though 242 MW of utility-scale solar was installed during 2010, with an estimated 776 MW scheduled for completion this year (according to GTM Research).

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Extreme Engineering for Extreme Conditions

Ample space, extremely high solar irradiation, large areas without reliable energy sources — desert-like regions in the earth’s sunbelt offer interesting opportunities for solar power plants. But desert locations also come with huge challenges. Extreme climate conditions make for high demands on solar technologies. Entirely new concepts are needed in order for advanced technology to help reduce the risks of extreme climate conditions. The following examples will help illustrate this principle.

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