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Off-Grid & Grid Tied Mounting Techniques Inverters. System Sizing & Design PV Modules Future of PVs. Residential Implementation of Photovoltaic Systems By Chris Hinton & Patrick Patterson. Placement & Orientation Energy Storage Charge controllers.

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residential implementation of photovoltaic systems by chris hinton patrick patterson
Off-Grid & Grid Tied

Mounting Techniques

Inverters

System Sizing & Design

PV Modules

Future of PVs

Residential Implementation of Photovoltaic SystemsBy Chris Hinton & Patrick Patterson
  • Placement & Orientation
  • Energy Storage
  • Charge controllers
two types of residential photovoltaic pv systems
Two Types of Residential Photovoltaic (PV) Systems
  • Grid-tied
  • Off-grid

East Lansing, Michigan

- National Renewable Energy Lab

Golden, Colorado

- National Renewable Energy Lab

off grid pv systems
Off-grid PV Systems
  • Power for remote systems
  • Cost-prohibitive utility line extensions

Location unknown

- SolarDepot.com

“…Electric company quoted US$7 a foot to bring in the utility line from about a mile away (about US$37,000).”

- Home Power Magazine #92 Pg 22

grid tied pv systems
Grid-tied PV Systems
  • Net Metering
  • Local incentives promote grid-tied systems exclusively
  • Reduce peak power demand on utility

- Energy Trust of Oregon

pv system sizing
PV System Sizing

How much power do you need?

  • Energy use & auditing
  • Energy efficiency measures
  • Energy requirements for PV
off grid system considerations
Off-grid System Considerations

Design system to match load

  • Begin with precise load calculations
  • Reduce load requirements through efficiency measures
  • Estimate energy production potential from solar insolation data
  • Select PV hardware to match load requirements

- Xantrex

grid tied system considerations
Grid-tied System Considerations

Design system economically

  • Examine previous power bills
  • Implement energy efficiency first
  • Estimate production potential from solar insolation data
  • Choose % of load to match
  • Select PV hardware for utility interconnection

- Xantrex

module placement orientation
Module Placement & Orientation
  • Implications of shading
  • The sun path
  • Azimuth
  • Tilt angle

Moorepark, California

- BP Solar

tracing the sun
Tracing the Sun
  • Seasonal sun path variations
  • Solar pathfinder tool
  • Obstacles to sunlight can be traced and predicted for different times of the year

- Real Goods

- Home Power Magazine # 57, pg. 32

module placement orientation guidelines
Module Placement & Orientation Guidelines
  • Standard PV module azimuth rule:
  • (Orientation) = (True South)
  • Note: In Portland, true South is about
  • 19° east of magnetic South
  • Standard PV module tilt rule:
  • (Angle from horizontal) =
  • (Geographic Latitude)

http://www.proaxis.com/~johnbell/iitt/questionftf49.htm

- Real Goods

what about azimuth performance
What About Azimuth & Performance?
  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pgs. 24-28
effects of tilting pv modules
Effects of Tilting PV Modules

Maximize energy production by optimizing tilt angle

Seasonal adjustments can further maximize production capabilities

- Home Power Magazine # 57, pg. 35

how much does tilt angle really matter
How much does tilt angle really matter?
  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pgs. 24-28
module placement orientation considerations
Module Placement & Orientation Considerations

Placement and orientation often depend upon system priority:

  • Off-grid systems should maximize energy production
  • Grid-tied systems often maximize aesthetics characteristics
aesthetics count
Aesthetics Count

This is the same house!

  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pg. 26
  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pgs. 10, 11
module mounting
Module Mounting

Roof Mounted

Ground Mounted

  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pg. 15

- National Renewable Energy Lab

Trackers

  • Home Power Magazine # 95, pg. 127
mounting considerations
Mounting Considerations
  • PV cooling
  • Wind resistance
  • Structural Stability
  • Code compliance
  • PV Orientation
  • Aesthetics
  • Visibility (visible installations may increase public awareness of renewable energy)

Oak Park, California

- BP Solar

energy storage
Energy Storage
  • Off-grid storage needs
  • Grid-tied energy storage
  • Cost and Efficiency Considerations

- Home Power Magazine # 27, pg. 34

- National Renewable Energy Lab

off grid energy storage
Off-grid Energy Storage
  • Calculate storage requirements from:
    • Climate (periods of cloudy weather?)
    • Critical loads (what do you need to power?)
    • Capacity should last 4 – 21 days
  • Batteries should not be discharged more than 50% – 70% or battery life is shortened
  • Install batteries in safe, climate-controlled, ventilated location (not in your living room)
grid tied energy storage
Grid-tied Energy Storage
  • Most Grid-tied systems do not use batteries
  • Rather the utility grid is treated as a 100% efficient, unlimited capacity battery (except during outages)
  • Batteries may be added for additional storage flexibility
batteries cost efficiency considerations
Batteries: Cost & Efficiency Considerations
  • Batteries add significant cost to a PV system
  • Charging batteries significantly reduces system efficiency: 20% energy losses are typical during battery charging

“The Xantrex XS12205 12-volt, 184 amp hour,AGM battery was designed for backup and solar applications.”

$399 (list) or $179 (on sale)

http://www.partsonsale.com/xs12200.html

photovoltaic hardware selection
Photovoltaic Hardware Selection
  • PV Modules
  • Inverters & Charge Controllers
  • Mounting Hardware
  • Balance of System Components
photovoltaic modules selection criteria
Photovoltaic Modules – Selection Criteria
  • Cell types (in decreasing order of price and efficiency)
    • Monocrystalline
    • Polycrystalline
    • Amorphous (thin-film)
  • Performance
    • IV curves
    • Maximum power rating
    • efficiency
  • Aesthetics
photovoltaic modules product survey
Photovoltaic Modules – Product Survey
  • BP Solar: BP 5170 http://www.bpsolar.com/ContentDocuments/84/BP%205170S.pdf
  • Shell Solar: SP150-PC http://www.shell.com/static/shellsolar/downloads/products/us/ShellSP150-PC_USv1.pdf
  • Evergreen Solar: EC-110 http://www.evergreensolar.com/egsolar1/pdf/ec100series13.pdf
  • Kyocera: KC120-1 http://www.kyocerasolar.com/pdf/specsheets/kc120_1.pdf
  • Sharp: NT-S5E1U http://www.sharpusa.com/files/sol_dow_185WSS.pdf
inverters selection criteria
Inverters – Selection Criteria
  • Output types
    • True sine wave
    • Modified sine wave
  • Input requirements
    • 12VDC, 24VDC, 48VDC
    • String inverters
    • PV Modules wired accordingly
  • Monitoring and data logging capabilities
  • Non-islanding inverters for Grid-tie applications

- SMA America

charge controllers
Charge Controllers
  • Purpose – safe battery charging
  • Types
    • Series
    • Shunt
  • Stand-alone units
  • Integrated (into inverter)

- RV Power Products

pc interface trace xantrex
PC Interface: Trace (Xantrex)
  • Home Power Magazine # 94, pgs. 24, 26
inverters charge controllers product survey
Inverters & Charge Controllers – Product Survey
  • Outback Power Systems
    • http://www.outbackpower.com/
  • SMA America
    • http://www.sma-america.com/
  • Xantrex
    • http://www.xantrex.com/products/index.asp
mounting hardware
Mounting Hardware
  • Two Seas Mounting Structures

http://www.2seas.com/matrix_ground_roof_a_r.htm

    • Ground/Roof
    • Flush Mount
    • Multi-Tier
    • Low Profile
  • Unirac

http://www.unirac.com/

    • Large Array PV Module Mounting System
    • Solarmount (ground/roof)
    • Tracker 200 (2-module tracking rack)

- UniRac

balance of system components
Balance of System Components
  • DC disconnects
  • AC Disconnects
  • Fuses/Breakers
  • Grounding hardware
  • Lightning Arrestors
  • Combiner Boxes
case studies
Case Studies
  • Off Grid Living
  • Grid-tied with batteries and monitoring
  • Off Grid PV & Wind Hybrid System
  • Grid-tied system with unbelievable payback
conclusions personal thoughts
Conclusions & Personal Thoughts
  • Carefully designed residential PV systems provide their owners with clean, reliable power, and promote interest in renewable energy sources
  • Hydrogen as Energy Storage
  • Building-integrated materials
  • Expanded use of solar energy for water purification, water heating, space heating (air-to-air heat exchangers), as well as electricity production
  • Home Power Magazine # 93, pg. 27
references
References
  • Bell, John (2000). Questions from the Field… [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Bisbee, D. (2002) Off the Grid: Starting Small Home Power Magazine, No 92, December/January, pp. 22-23.
  • BP Solar (2003). BP Solar Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Chadderdon, M. and Chadderdon, J. (2003) The Chadderdon Photovoltaic Story. Home Power Magazine, No 93, February/March pp. 10-18.
  • Energy Trust (2003). Solar Electric for Homes and Businesses [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • McCoy, C. and Reising, C. (2002) Still Saying "Yes" to Sunshine Home Power Magazine, No 89, June/July, pp. 10-19.
  • National Renewable Energy Lab (2003). Photographic Information Exchange [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • OutBack Power Systems (2003). OutBack Power Systems Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Perez, R. and Drake, J. (1997) Where and How to Mount PV Modules. Home Power Magazine, No 57, February/March, pp. 32-37.
  • RV Power Products (2003). RV Power Products Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Schaeffer, J. ed. (2001) Solar Living Source Book: The Complete Guide To Renewable Energy Technologies & Sustainable Living. 11th ed. USA,
  • Chelsea Green Publishing Company.
  • Simons, B. (2003) PV Done Right - Grid Tie, Battery Backup, and System Monitoring. Home Power Magazine, No 94, April/May, pp. 22-27.
  • SMA-America (2003). SMA-America Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Solar Depot (2003). Solar Depot Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Solatron Technologies (2003). Xantrex XS12205 [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Two Seas Metalworks (2003). Two Seas Metalworks Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • UniRac (2003). Unirac Home Page [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Webster, D. (2003) Getting Off the Lifetime Utility Payment Plan. Home Power Magazine, No 95, June/July, pp. 22-28.
  • Xantrex (2003). Products [Internet] Available from: [Accessed July 2003]
  • Yewdall, Z. (2003) PV Orientation. Home Power Magazine, No 93, February/March, pp. 24-28.
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