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Contents

1. Introduction
1.1 About the Book
1.2 PV overview and history
1.3 SPV at CEL
1.2 Why Solar?
1.3 Energy Requirements
1.4 Demystify the Myths
1.5 Characteristics of Solar Energy
1.5.1 Solar energy an outline
1.5.2 Cost effectiveness
1.5.3 External costs of conventional electricity generation

2. Solar Energy Solutions and Systems


2.1 Applications of solar energy as a renewable source
2.1.1 Solar thermal energy
2.1.2 Solar photovoltaic energy
2.2 Insolation spread
2.3 Capturing and harnessing Solar Energy
2.1.1 Solar photovoltaic effect
2.1.2 Solar cell
2.1.3 Balance of systems
2.4 Types of PV systems
2.4.1 Stand-alone systems
2.4.2 Grid Connected Systems
2.5 Operation

3 System Components
3.1 Photovoltaic system components
3.2 The Solar panel
3.2.1 Types of Modules
3.2.2 Solar panel parameters
3.3 Battery
3.3.1 Battery Bank
3.3.2 Types of Batteries
3.3.3 Temperature effect
3.4 Power charge regulator
3.5 Converter
3.5.3 DC-DC converter
3.5.4 DC-AC converter
3.5.5 Additional features of inverter
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3.6 Equipment or Load


3.7 Power conditioning unit
3.8 Junction Boxes
3.9 Wiring
3.10 Balance of system standards

4 Design
4.1 Introduction and basic principles
4.2 System type selection
4.3 Home Appliances
4.4 Illustration and Flowchart for design of habitat PV system
4.5 Design process
4.5.1 Load estimation
4.5.2 Inverter rating
4.5.3 Daily energy supplied by the inverter
4.5.4 System voltage
4.5.5 Battery capacity
4.5.6 Consider for battery autonomy
4.5.7 Daily energy generated by panels
4.5.8 Solar radiation, capacity and number of panels
4.6 Wire sizing
4.7 Factors affecting performance of a PV system

5. Installation and commissioning


5.1 Safety
5.1.1 Electrical
5.1.2 Chemical
5.1.3 Handling
5.1.4 Points to check before wiring.
5.1.5 Points to check when selecting the installation location
5.2 Assembly
5.2.1 Configuration
5.2.2 Mounting
5.2.3 Connection
5.3 Battery
5.3.1 Site
5.3.2 Connection
5.3.3 Earthing
5.4 Control Equipment
5.4.1 Inverter connections
5.4.2 Wiring
5.5 System Commissioning
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5.5.1 Visual Check


5.5.2 Connections
5.5.3 Testing output of solar panel
5.5.4 Applying Power
5.5.5 Recommissioning
5.6 Parts and Tools
5.6.1 Standard parts
5.6.2 Roof tile parts
5.6.3 Measurement
5.6.4 Tool kit

6. Application
6.1 Habitat application
6.1.1 Solar lanterns
6.1.2 Domestic Habitat lighting and fan
6.1.3 Outdoor and street lighting
6.1.4 Water pumping
6.2 Industrial application
6.2.1 ONGC offshore power
6.2.2 Low power TV transmitter
6.2.3 Obstruction warning light at airport
6.2.4 Railway signalling(supplementary power)
6.2.5 Telecom towers
6.3 Defence Use
6.3.1 Lightweight foldable solar charger for Manpack Radio Equipment
6.3.2 Lightweight foldable solar charger for Manpack Wireless
Communication Equipment SCU-01

7. Maintenance and Troubleshooting


7.1 Light units not glowing and no low battery indication on charge
controller
7.2 No charging indication on the charge controller
7.3 Low duration
7.4 Incident switch off
7.5 Breakage
7.6 Lamp flickering
7.7 Lamp semi glow
7.8 Lamp blackening
7.9 No indication
7.10 Water entry or insect entry

List of figure
Fig.1.1 SPV module for unmanned offshore applications
Fig.1.2 SPV module with screen printed liquid cast encapsulation technique
Fig.1.3 SPV modules of different types of solar cells
Fig. 1.4 SPV modules during 90s with increased efficiency
Fig. 1.5 mono crystalline SPV module
Fig.1.6 Solar insulation over India
Fig. 1.7 Indias energy balance India has had a negative energy balance for decades
Which has forced the purchase of energy from outside the country?
Fig: 1.8 Energy consumption in power sector (2005)
Fig: 1.9 Per capita Residential Electricity demand (kWh/per person)
Fig 1.10 Indias electricity use breakdown in commercial and residential buildings
Fig 1.11 Actual power production capacity of a solar PV system
Fig 1.12 sustainable energy solution
Fig 1.13 Various layouts for panel grafting on urban households.
Fig 1.14 Evolution of competitive solar technology.
Fig 1.15 Azure Power's 2-megawatt photovoltaic plant in the state of Punjab
Fig 1.16 A 5-megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant has been installed at village
Rawara, Taluka Phalodi, in Rajasthan
Fig. 2.1 An example of a solar water heating system (antifreeze is used so that the
Liquid does not freeze if outside temp. drops below freezing)
Fig 2.2 Electricity in a typical solar cell
Fig 2.3 Process of production of electricity in a solar power plant
Fig 2.4: 10-MW solar power plant in Barstow, California.
Fig 2.5 Solar radiation map of India
Fig 2.6: Flow of energy in a solar PV system
Fig 2.7(a) p-n junction silicon semiconductor
Fig 2.7(b) A solar cell connected to an ammeter showing a deflection when exposed
to light.
Fig 2.8: photovoltaic solar cell to photovoltaic solar array
Fig 2.9 A PV system showing the balance of components
Fig 2.10 A Lead Acid battery
Fig 2.11(a) Discharging process of a lead acid battery
Fig 2.11(b) Charging process of a lead acid battery
Fig 2.12 Nickel Cadmium Battery
Fig 2.13 Charge Controller
Fig 2.14 Solar inverters
Fig 2.15(a): A circuit diagram of solar installation with DC and AC loads
Fig 2.15(b) Flow chart of a stand-alone system
Fig 3.1: A basic solar PV system.
Fig 3.2: A working model of the basic solar PV system at CEL
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Fig 3.3: The connection of cells to form a solar panel.


Fig 3.4: Different IV Curves. The current (A) changes with the irradiance, and the
voltage (V) changes with the temperature.
Fig 3.5: The different components of a solar panel.
Fig 3.6: The solar panel parameters and their role in efficiency calculation.
Fig 3.7: Interconnection of panels in parallel. The voltage remains constant while the
current duplicates.
Fig 3.8: A 24V, 150Ah battery interconnection at CEL.
Fig 3.9: The specifications of a Valve Regulated Lead Acid Battery.
Fig 3.10: The specifications of Rechargeable Lead Acid Tubular Positive Plate
Battery.
Fig 3.11: Circuit diagram of a charge controller.
Fig 3.12: A realization of the inverter with a transformer with a movable switch and
a current source.
Fig 3.13: The output achieved from the inverter with the subsequent harmonics.
Fig 3.14: A Single phase transistor bridge inverter
Fig 3.15: 500 kW, 3 phase inverter
Fig 3.16: The components of a power conditioning unit.
Fig 3.17: The cable requirements
Fig 3.18: A three-panel solar array diagram.
Fig 3.19: A directly connected solar power dc pump diagram.
Fig 3.20: Battery-backed solar powerdriven dc pump.
Fig 3.21: Stand-alone hybrid solar power system with standby generator.
Fig 3.22: Grid-connected hybrid solar power system with standby generator.
Fig 4.1: Indias first two megawatt grid connected project, commissioned in the state
of West Bengal in east India.
Fig 4.2: Some of the appliances which can be run by solar PV system
Fig 4.3 Series and parallel connection of batteries to supply the required energy to the
load considering 2 days autonomy
Fig 4.4: Series and parallel connection of PV modules with their ratings that are
required to supply the energy to the load.
Fig 4.5 Complete design of solar PV system to fulfill the required load as described in
the example
Fig 4.6: Suns path during summer and winter
Fig 4.7: The effect of temperature on the IV characteristics of a solar cell.
Fig 4.8: Solar panels with dirt and dust settled on it
Fig 4.9: Amorphous solar panel
Fig 4.10 Polycrystalline solar cell
Fig 4.11 Mono crystalline solar cell
Fig 5.1: Chemical handling apparatus
Fig 5.2 PV module safety
Fig 5.3 Examples of poor roof condition
Fig 5.4 Azimuthal angle
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Fig 5.5: Wind pressure


Fig 5.6 A schematic diagram of the proposed system.
Fig 5.7 Module Mounting
Fig 5.8: picture of EXIDE solar battery
Fig 5.9 Schematics showing electrical connections
Fig 5.10: Picture of a charge controller
Fig 5.11: Inverter for 1MegaWatt power station

List of flowchart
Flowchart 1.1: Technology & types of PV cell.
Flowchart 2.1: the processes involved in the production of a solar cell
Flowchart 2.2 Flow chart of a grid tied system
Flowchart 2.3 operation with AC & DC load
Flowchart 4.1: design of habitat PV system
Flowchart 5.1 an overview of the entire process of installation of solar panels
Flowchart 5.2: Going ahead with installation of PV system
Flowchart 5.3 Creating a Stand-Alone Mount
Flowchart 5.4 Roof Mounting
Flowchart 5.5 making electrical wiring connections
Flowchart 5.6: Inverter connections
Flowchart 5.7 testing process flow

List of table
Table 1.1 Conversion efficiencies of various PV module technologies
Table 1.2: Overview of the usage of SPV systems in India
Table 3.1: The BoS items / components with BIS Standards specifications
Table 4.1 Power rating of some home appliances
Table 4.2 illustrative habitat appliance use in a day
Table 4.3: Calculation of load in Watt-hr
Table 4.4: Illustrative power (watt) use per day
Table 4.5: Tilt angle as per geographic latitude

1. Introduction
1.2 PV overview & history
PV cells are made of light-sensitive semiconductor materials that use photons to
dislodge electrons to drive an electric current. There are two broad categories of
technology used for PV cells, namely Crystalline silicon, as shown which accounts for the majority of PV cell
production;
Thin film, which is newer and growing in popularity.
The family tree gives an overview of these technologies available today. The type
of silicon that comprises a specific cell, based on the cell manufacturing process.
Each cell type has pros and cons. Mono-crystalline PV cells are the most expensive
and energy intensive to produce but usually yield the highest efficiencies. The
modules made from Polycrystalline silicon crystals are approximately 14% efficient
and are extremely good value for money. Amorphous solar modules are not too
susceptible to shading and are suited to low light levels.

Crystalline Silicon Technologies: Crystalline cells are made from ultra-pure silicon
raw material such as those used in semiconductor chips. They use silicon wafers that
are typically 150-200 microns (one Fifth of a millimeter) thick.
Thin Film Technologies: Thin film is made by depositing layers of semiconductor
material barely 0.3 to 2 micrometers thick onto glass or stainless steel substrates. As
the semiconductor layers are so thin, the costs of raw material are much lower than
the capital equipment and processing costs.
Conversion Efficiency: Apart from aesthetic differences, the most obvious
difference amongst PV cell technologies is in its conversion efficiency

Apart from aesthetic differences, the most obvious difference amongst PV cell
technologies is in its conversion efficiency.
Evolving solar panels in India :
The development of solar cells for terrestrial applications was initiated at CEL following
Governments decision, in 1975, to mount concerted efforts in its high technology area.
CEL has carried out Extensive in-house R&D work spanning a decade for developing
the complete technology for the manufacture of silicon solar cells and modules and
designing, engineering and operating a pilot plant for production of such cells and
modules based on the process technology and production engineering so developed. The
activity also so included the development of a whole range of SPV systems and
undertaking large volume commercial production, supply, field installation and
commissioning of such systems. Starting with processing of 38mm diameter hyper pure
silicon wafers using vacuum metallization in 1978, CEL went through an evolutionary
development process in terms of both different sizes of cells and the whole range of
process technology from making them. It now manufactures, using technology
completely developed inhouse, 100mm diameter n+-p junction solar cells starting CZ
solar grid silicon wafer and employing low cost techniques of texturization, screenprinted silver metallization, antireflection coating and the state of art lamination
technology
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Fig.1.1 SPV module for unmanned offshore applications


The ONGC module is a pioneering intrinsically safe double glass module developed
specifically for operation in explosion prone environments, such as on the offshore, oil
production platforms of ONGC. These are the 1st modules in the world to be certified
with Gr.I, Gr.IIA and Gr.IIB by Central Mining Research Station (CMRS), Dhanbad and
accepter by international insurers, Lloyds of U.K.

Fig.1.2 SPV module with screen printed liquid cast


Encapsulation technique- The screen printing process for the metallization of silicon
solar cells uses the thick film technique giving scope for more automation in
manufacturing thereby increasing efficiency and reducing the processing cost to about
60% as compared to the conventional vacuum evaporation technique.

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Fig.1.3 SPV modules of different types of solar cells


During 80s CEL has undergone rigorous technological innovation for increasing
efficiency and reducing the cost of production of solar cells. The size and structure of
solar cells varied, 4 diameter solar cell was introduced, Lamination technology
bringing with it automation in manufacturing process.

Fig. 1.4 SPV modules during 90s with increased efficiency


NS POWER demonstrates the importance of entering an area of advanced technology at
early stage in the evolution of technology and building indigenous capacity to convert
science into technology and further for industrial and domestic use. CEL, working for
more than four decades has built up an internationally recognised capability in SPV area
of integrating Science, Technology, and Industry.
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Fig. 1.5 mono crystalline SPV module


with its commitment to harness the solar energy, has opened up new vistas in the field of
solar photovoltaic. Backed by an integrated production facility to manufacture MonoCrystalline Silicon Solar Cells and Modules with the state-of-the-art screen-printing
technology, the company has supplied more than 1.5 Lakhs SPV Systems in India and
abroad, covering both rural and industrial applications.
1.4 Why SOLAR?
India is a tropical country, where sunshine is available for longer hours per day and in
great intensity. Solar energy, therefore, has great potential as future energy source. It also
has the advantage of permitting the decentralized distribution of energy, thereby
empowering people at the grassroots level. India is endowed with vast solar energy
potential. About 5,000 trillion kWh per year energy is incident over Indias land area
with most parts receiving 4-7 kWh per sq. m per day. Theoretically, a small fraction of
the total incident solar energy (if captured effectively) can meet the entire countrys
power requirements.

Fig.1.6 Solar insolation over India


Source: http://www.esri.com/mapmuseum
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It is also clear that given the large proportion of poor and energy unserved population in
the country, every effort needs to be made to exploit the relatively abundant sources of
energy available to the country and it is in this situation the solar imperative is both
urgent and feasible to enable the country to meet long-term energy needs and also from
an energy security perspective, solar is the most secure of all sources, since it is
abundantly available.
Hence both technology routes for conversion of solar radiation into heat and electricity,
namely, solar thermal and solar photovoltaic, can effectively be harnessed providing
huge scalability for solar in India. Solar also provides the ability to generate power on a
distributed basis and enables rapid capacity addition with short lead times.
1.5 Energy Requirements
Almost 400 million Indiansabout a third of the subcontinents populationdont have
access to electricity. This power deficit, which includes about 100,000 unelectrified
villages, places Indias annual per-capita electricity consumption at just 639 kilowatt
hoursamong the worlds lowest rates.
Since the 1980s, and still currently, India has encountered a negative balance in overall
energy consumption and production. This has resulted in the need to purchase energy
from outside the country to supply and fulfil the needs of the entire country. The
Government is more sensitive to renewable energy potential and has started to put
reforms and projects, incentives and legislation in place to convince investors and
companies to make the shift.

Fig. 1.7 Indias energy balance (Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration)
India has had a negative energy balance for decades which has forced the purchase of
energy from outside the country.
The breakdown of energy sources for power production of India in 2005. India is a large
consumer of coal, which makes up more than 57% of its total consumption.

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Fig: 1.8 Energy consumption in power sector (2005)


(Source: www.presidentofindia.nic.in)
India relies heavily on coal energy to produce electricity. A strong second is hydro
power, followed by natural gas. The consumption of all renewable energies represents
fully one third of the total consumption. India now ranks third amongst the coal
producing countries in the world. Being the most abundant fossil fuel in India till date, it
continues to be one of the most important sources for meeting the domestic energy
needs. It accounts for 55% of the countrys total energy supplies. Through sustained
increase in investment, production of coal increased from about 70 MT (million tones)
(MoC 2005) in early 1970s to 382 MT in 2004/05. Most of the coal production in India
comes from open pit mines contributing to over 81% of the total production while
underground mining accounts for rest of the national output
(MoC 2005). Despite this increase in production, the existing demand exceeds the
supply. India currently faces coal shortage of 23.96 MT. Stressing the need to find new
energy sources, a top PSU official said India is likely to run out of its 60-70 billion
tonnes of coal reserves by 2040-41 if the demand continues to grow at the present pace.
The demand for coal will reach two billion tonnes mark by 2016-17. We need to grow
at the rate of 17-18 per cent from the present 6-7 per cent to meet this growing demand,
Coal India Ltd (CIL) Chairman Partha S Bhattacharyya said at the ICC Coal Summit.
With coal reserves expected to run out in the next 45 years in the country, there is a
greater need to switch to renewable sources of energy. Poor quality of power supply and
frequent power cuts and shortages impose a heavy burden on Indias fast-growing trade
and industry.
The access gap is complicated by another problem more than three-quarters of Indias
electricity is produced by burning coal and natural gas. With Indias rapidly-growing
population currently 1.1 billionalong with its strong economic growth in recent
years, its carbon emissions were more than 1.6 billion tons in 2007, among the worlds
highest. The only light of hope is the fact that with harnessing of solar energy, the
country can generate nearly 50,000 MW of solar power by 2050, the capacity of which
could be further enhanced to over 75,000 MW.
India has been facing electricity shortages in spite of appreciable growth in electricity
generation. The demand for electrical energy has been growing at the faster rate and
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shall increase at higher growth rate to match with the projected growth of Indian
economy.
The map shown below shows the individual per capita demand of the individual states of
the country.

Fig: 1.9 Per capita Residential Electricity demand (kWh/per person)


(Source: CEA, 2009a)
The demand is maximum in the states like Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarat
and Rajasthan, the states which account for a major share in the unparalleled solar
potential of India.

Fig 1.10 Indias electricity use breakdown in commercial and residential buildings.
(Source: Bassi, n.d.)

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In a typical commercial building in India, it is estimated that about 60% of the total
electricity is used for lighting, 32% for space conditioning as well as 8% for heating
ventilation and airconditioning.

1.6 Demystifying the Myths


1. Myth: Solar is too expensive for widespread usage and will therefore never compete
with conventional means of power generation.
Facts:
The cost of solar technologies has declined every year since they were first introduced
onto the market in the 50s
The reduction in cost has been driven by improved research and technology, and most of
all by steady increases in sales volume.
The average growth rate of PV manufacturing in India is 35 percent in the past 3 years
Every ton of conventional, non-renewable energy used adds to an overall shortage and
therefore makes this kind of energy more expensive to locate and to use
Solar on the other hand is a renewable resource and an immense amount of solar energy
strikes the Earth's surface every day
2. Myth: Solar is not feasible for my energy needs.
Facts:
India receives solar energy equivalent to more than 5,000 Trillion kWh per year, which
is far more than its total annual energy consumption
The average solar insolation in India is 4-7 kWh/square meter.
The peak power of a solar panel is estimated for 1000W/m2.

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1.

(It produces 2.3 kW power enough to operate 10 household lamps of 23W (example)
for 10 hours.)
The fixed and one time installation cost for 1kW SPV system is a mere amount of Rs2,
70,000* ((INR)(current rate under MNRE for standalone system), where as it will have a
lifetime of 30 years with lowest of maintenance cost and one time free battery
replacement by CEL**.
For grid interactive hybrid SPV system the cost of installation is even a smaller amount
of Rs 180* per Watt.
(* The rate mentioned is not inclusive of subsidy or any relaxation. Subsidy may vary
from state to state as well as in hilly and plain areas)
(** Provided CEL is the SPV system installer)
3. Myth: Solar systems is not a sustainable solution.
Facts:
Considering various perspectives individually:
Self reliance
The per capita average annual domestic electricity consumption in India in 2009 was 96
kWh in rural areas and 288 kWh in urban areas for those with access to electricity.
The production capacity of solar systems can easily meet the above demands keeping in
mind the rich solar potential of India.
The average life of a solar system is 25years and hence a cost effective, long run and
permanent setup unaffected by the ever changing conventional source market.
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2. Community upliftment
At a fixed capital investment it can generate substantial revenues when setup as a hybrid
grid connected system.
In field regions, off-grid setups can meet the demands of agro pumping, water heating
systems etc.
3. National contribution
It is a clean energy.
It will cut down on the existing 20% of power losses in transmission and distribution by
the provision of standalone systems in the rural and isolated areas.
It will reduce the pressure on the environment.
All of the above together will build a sustainable solution

Fig 1.12 sustainable energy solution


4. Myth: Solar power is not practical in urban areas
Facts:
Solar energy systems are installed at the point of use eliminating the need to trench
underground and dig up asphalt
No extra land space is needed making urban installation practical
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Fig 1.13 Various layouts for panel grafting on urban households.


Solar power systems give off no noise or pollution, making them the ideal renewable
energy source in urban areas

I.

5. Myth: Solar is not competitive with the conventional energy market.


Facts:
First generation cells consist of large-area, high quality and single junction devices.

Fig 1.14 Evolution of competitive solar technology.

II.

The most successful second generation materials have been cadmium telluride (CdTe),
copper indium gallium Selenide, amorphous silicon and micro-morphous silicon. These
materials are applied in a thin film to a supporting substrate such as glass or ceramics
reducing material mass and therefore costs. These technologies do hold promise of
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III.

higher conversion efficiencies, particularly CIGS-CIS, DSC and CdTe offers


significantly cheaper production costs.
Third generation technologies aim to enhance poor electrical performance of second
generation (thin-film technologies) while maintaining very low production costs.
There are a few approaches to achieving these high efficiencies:
Multi-junction photovoltaic cell (multiple energy threshold devices).
Modifying incident spectrum (concentration).
Use of excess thermal generation (caused by UV light) to enhance voltages or carrier
collection.
Use of infrared spectrum to produce electricity at night. Plummeting prices of
polysilicon, a raw material used in solar modules, could make power from solar
photovoltaic plants as cheap as Rs 5 a unit or less by 2015 against Rs 12 a unit as
estimated today.

6. Myth: Solar energy and solar designs work well only in warm, sunny climates
Facts:
Solar technologies can work efficiently and cost-effectively anywhere in India, even in
cloudy communities
Energy-storage systems make solar technologies in less sunny regions practical Some
photovoltaic systems store electricity in batteries so that energy can be retrieved later -even after up to 30 consecutive days without sunlight
7. Myth: Solar electricity cannot serve any significant fraction of Indian electricity
needs.
Facts:
With about 300 clear, sunny days in a year, India's theoretical solar power reception, on
only its land area, is about 5 Petawatt-hours per year (PWh/yr) (i.e. 5 trillion kWh/yr or
about 600 TW). The daily average solar energy incident over India varies from 4 to 7
kWh/m2 with about 15002000 sunshine hours per year (depending upon location),
which is far more than current total energy consumption
Assuming the efficiency of PV modules were as low as 10%, this would still be a
thousand times greater than the domestic electricity demand projected for 2015
8. Myth: To collect enough solar energy a business needs to install large arrays of
collectors requiring vast land area.
Facts:
There is sufficient roof space on most businesses to produce the total electricity needed
using existing photovoltaic technology.
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1.7 Characteristics of Solar Energy


1.7.1 Solar Energy- An Outline
A new era for solar power is approaching. Long derided as uneconomic, it is gaining
ground as technologies improve and the cost of traditional energy sources rises. Within
three to seven years, unsubsidized solar power could cost no more to end customers in
many markets, than electricity generated by fossil fuels or by renewable alternatives to
solar.
i. Indian SPV energy scenario Presently, India have over 17.5 GW (June 2010) of
installed renewable energy (Wind =11.8 GW, Small Hydro =2.8 GW, PV installed=15
MW, Rest is mostly Biomass) capacity. Out of this installed PV, the grid tied and off grid
tied share are 12.3 MW (less than 0.1% of grid tied renewable energy) and 2.9 MW
(0.7% of off grid renewable capacity of India). Although, sun provides 10,000 times
more energy, we daily consume and India being a tropical country receives adequate
solar irradiance (Daily radiation ~ 4-7 KWh/m2, solar energy received= 5,000 trillion
KWh/year, Sunny days/year = 250-300) which is a major driver for the SPV market in
the country. Presently, SPV based applications usage in India is not in accordance with
that in the global market (Globally, grid-connected PV applications account for 75%
while in India it account only ~ 3% of the overall PV applications) as much of the
country does not have an electrical grid. Table below shows the different mode of use of
SPV systems in India.

India is gradually shifting focus towards its solar energy program as the use and
implication of SPV is very low in the country. The Government is striving hard to push
the SPV industry by introducing grid based incentives and concessions in various duties
in the recent budget (2010-11) to make the country as a global leader. Driven by an
increasing demand for electricity, wide gap between demand and supply and pressure to
reduce greenhouse gas emission, India has targeted 22 GW (20 GW grid and 2GW off
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grid tied) of Solar Power by 2022 in its Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission
(JNNSM). Out of this, around 50 % will be produced through solar photovoltaic (SPV).
Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) is aiming to achieve 500 MWp gridconnected SPV capacities by 2017. It is estimated that the Indian solar energy sector will
grow at 25% per year in next few years.
ii. Latest steps of Indian Market on the global front are India inaugurated Azure Power's
2-megawatt photovoltaic plant in the state of Punjab, the first privately owned, utilityscale power plant on the Asian subcontinent.

Fig 1.15 Azure Power's 2-megawatt photovoltaic plant in the state of Punjab
Built under a 30-year power purchase agreement with the Punjab State Electricity Board,
the plant will help power 4,000 rural homes for 20,000 people. Farooq Abdullah,
minister of new and renewable energy, said the plant showcases India's pledge to
generate 20,000 megawatts from solar power by 2022 under the country's national solar
mission. An Rs 67-crore, 5 megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant has been installed
at village Rawara, Taluka Phalodi, in Rajasthan. The project, owned by Indian Oil
Corporation, was commissioned by Rajasthan Electronics & Instruments Ltd under the
Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission, as stated by Ministry of Heavy Industries.

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Fig 1.16 A 5-megawatt solar photovoltaic power plant has been installed at village
Rawara, Taluka Phalodi, in Rajasthan
This power plant is designed to feed power to 33/132 kV grid sub-station at village Bap,
which is situated 18 km from plant site Rawara. It is expected to generate energy of 67
lakh KWh a year. 1.7.2 Cost Effectiveness The decrease in manufacturing costs and
retail prices of PV modules and systems (including electronics and safety devices,
cabling, mounting structures, and installation) have come as the industry has gained
from economies of scale and experience. This has been brought about by extensive
innovation, research, development and ongoing political support for the development of
the PV market. Reductions in prices for materials (such as mounting structures), cables,
land use and installation account for much of the decrease in BOS costs. Another
contributor to the decrease of BOS and installation-related costs is the increase in
efficiency at module level. More efficient modules imply lower costs for balance of
system equipment, installation related costs and land use. Electricity price evolution
Costs for the electricity generated in existing gas and coal-fired power plants are
constantly rising. This is a real driver for the full competitiveness of PV. Energy prices
are increasing in many regions of the world due to the nature of the current energy mix.
The use of finite resources for power generation (such as oil, gas, coal and uranium), in
addition to growing economic and environmental costs will lead to increased price for
energy generated from fossil and nuclear fuels.
1.7.3 External costs of conventional electricity generation
The external costs to society incurred from burning fossil fuels or nuclear power
generation are not currently included in most electricity prices. These costs are both
local and, in the case of climate change, global. As there is uncertainty about the
magnitude of these costs, they are difficult to quantify and include in the electricity
prices. The market price of CO2 certificates remains quite low (around 14/tonne CO2
end of 2010) but is expected to rise in the coming decades.

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BENEFITS OF SOLAR ENERGY OVER DISTRIBUTED GRID ENERGY


As a distributed energy resource available nearby load centres, solar energy could reduce
transmission and distribution (T&D) costs and also line losses. According to World
Resources Institute (WRI), Indias electricity grid has the highest transmission and
distribution losses in the world a whopping 27%. Numbers published by various
Indian government agencies put that number at 30%, 40%, and greater than 40%. Solar
technologies like PV carry very short gestation periods of development and, in this
respect, can reduce the risk valuation of their investment. They could enhance the
reliability of electricity service when T&D congestion occurs at specific locations and
during specific times. By optimizing the location of generating systems and their
operation, distributed generation resources such as solar can ease constraints on local
transmission and distribution systems. They can also protect consumers from power
outages. For example, voltage surges of a mere millisecond can cause brownouts,
causing potentially large losses to consumers whose operations require high quality
power supply. Moreover, the peak generation time of PV systems often closely matches
peak loads for a typical day so that investment in power generation, transmission, and
distribution may be delayed or eliminated.

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2. Solar Energy Solutions and systems


2.1 Applications of solar energy as a renewable source
There are two main applications:
2.1.1 Solar thermal energy
Solar thermal energy (STE) is a technology for harnessing solar energy for thermal
energy. Solar collectors capture the energy of the sun and convert it into heat. The basic
idea of a solar collector is that the solar energy passes through a layer of glazed glass
where it is absorbed by the underlying material resulting in heat. The glazing of the glass
prevents heat from escaping, thereby effectively capturing the heat.

Fig. 2.1 An example of a solar water heating system (antifreeze is used so that the liquid
does not freeze if outside temp. drops below freezing)
Solar thermal collectors are as low, medium, or high-temperature collectors.
Low-temperature collectors are flat plates generally used to heat swimming pools.
Medium-temperature collectors are also usually flat plates but are used for heating water
or air for residential and commercial use. The applications include solar drying and
distillation.
High-temperature collectors concentrate sunlight using mirrors or lenses and are
generally used for electric power production. STE is different from photovoltaic, which
converts solar energy directly into electricity.
2.1.2 Solar Photovoltaic energy
Photovoltaic (PV) is a method of generating electrical power by converting solar
radiation into direct current electricity using semiconductors that exhibit the
photovoltaic effect. This is explained in more detail in the following sections.

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Fig 2.2 Electricity in a typical solar cell


Photovoltaic power generation employs solar panels composed of a number of solar
cells containing a photovoltaic material. Due to the growing demand for renewable
energy sources, the manufacturing of solar cells and photovoltaic arrays has advanced
considerably in recent years. Solar photovoltaic is growing rapidly, albeit from a small
base, to a total global capacity of 40 GW (40,000 MW) at the end of 2010.

Fig 2.3 Process of production of electricity in a solar power plant


Source: Energy Information Administration: Schott Corporation.

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Fig 2.4: 10-MW solar power plant in Barstow, California.


More than 100 countries use solar PV. Installations may be ground-mounted (and
sometimes integrated with farming and grazing) or built into the roof or walls of a
building (building-integrated photovoltaic).
2.2 Insulation spread
We receive energy from the sun in the form of solar radiation. Solar panels make use of
this radiation to generate electricity. The amount of solar radiation that strikes a single
location over a given period of time (usually one day) is called insulation.

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Fig 2.5 Solar radiation map of India


As can be seen from the Solar Radiation Map of India - most parts are suitable for
generating power from Solar Energy. The most suitable areas are Rajasthan, Gujarat,
Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Punjab, Haryana, Uttar
Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand, Tamil Nadu, Orissa, and West Bengal.
In general major Geography of Country is suitable for Solar Energy Utilization.

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2.3 Capturing and harnessing solar energy

Fig 2.6: Flow of energy in a solar PV system

Fig 2.7(a) p-n junction silicon semiconductor


The photovoltaic effect is the means by which solar panels or photovoltaic modules
generate electricity from light. A solar cell is made from a semiconductor material such
as silicon. Impurities are added to this to create two layers,
i. n-type material, which has too many electrons.
ii. p-type material, which has too few electrons.
The junction between the two is known as a p-n junction. This process is known as
doping.
30

Fig 2.7(b) A solar cell connected to an ammeter showing a deflection when exposed to
light.
Do it yourself: Get p-n junction silicon semiconductor, connect one end of wire to the ptype and n-type. Now connect an ammeter to the other end and complete the circuit and
place it in sunlight Light consists of packets of energy called photons. When these
photons hit the cell, they are either reflected, absorbed or pass straight through,
depending on their wavelength. The energy from those which are absorbed is given to
the electrons in the material which causes some of them to cross the p-n junction. If an
electrical circuit is made between the two sides of the cell a current will flow. This
current is proportional to the number of photons hitting the cell and therefore the light
intensity.
2.3.2 Solar cell
A solar cell is any device that directly converts the energy in light into electrical energy
through the process of photovoltaic.

Fig 2.8: photovoltaic solar cell to photovoltaic solar array


31

The performance of a solar or photovoltaic (PV) cell is measured in terms of its


efficiency at converting sunlight into electricity. There are a variety of solar cell
materials available, which vary in conversion efficiency.

Flowchart 2.1: the processes involved in the production of a solar cell


Solar cell plants like the one in CEL take the wafer through a high technology
semiconductor processing sequence to create working solar cells. In c-Si, wafers
typically undergo a process sequence of etching, diffusion, and screen printing steps
before they are tested and graded for incorporation into modules. The final part of the
overall manufacturing process is the solar system assembly and installation. First, an
array structure is chosen for the mechanical integration of the solar module. This array
structure will depend on the final location of the system, which could involve retrofitting
onto a roof, integrating into building materials for roofs or vertical walls, or polemounting, ground-mounting, or attaching to an industrial structure.

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2.3.3 Balance of systems

Fig 2.9 A PV system showing the balance of components


In addition to purchasing photovoltaic panels you will need to invest in some additional
equipment (called "balance-of-system") to condition and safely transmit the electricity to
the load that will use it The major balance-of-system equipments for systems are:
1. Batteries
Batteries accumulate excess energy created by your PV system and store it to be used at
night or when there is no other energy input. Batteries can discharge rapidly and yield
more current that the charging source can produce by itself, so pumps or motors can be
run intermittently. There are two types of batteries;
i. Lead Acid Batteries
ii. Nickel Cadmium Batteries

i. Lead Acid Batteries


Lead Acid Batteries are made of five basic components:
A resilient plastic container.
Positive and negative internal plates made of lead.
Plate separators made of porous synthetic material.
Electrolyte, a dilute solution of sulphuric acid and water, better known as battery acid.
Lead terminals, the connection point between the battery and whatever it powers.

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Fig 2.10 A Lead Acid Battery


1. Discharging process

Fig 2.11(a) Discharging process of a lead acid battery

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2. Charging process

2.11(b) Charging process of a lead acid battery


ii. Nickel Cadmium Batteries

Fig 2.12 Nickel Cadmium Battery


Source: Encyclopedia Britannica, Inc.
35

The Nickel-cadmium battery uses nickel oxide in its positive electrode (cathode), a
cadmium compound in its negative electrode (anode), and potassium hydroxide solution
as its electrolyte. The Nickel Cadmium Battery is rechargeable, so it can cycle
repeatedly. As the battery is discharged, the following reaction takes place:
Cd + 2H2O + 2NiOOH > 2Ni(OH)2 + Cd(OH)2

2. Charge controller
A solar charge controller is needed in virtually all solar power systems that utilize
batteries. The job of the solar charge controller is to regulate the power going from the
solar panels to the batteries. Overcharging batteries will at the least significantly reduce
battery life and at worst damage the batteries to the point that they are unusable.

Fig 2.13 Charge Controller

3. Inverter
The function of an inverter is to transform the low voltage DC of a lead acid battery into
higher voltage AC which may be used to power standard mains appliances. An inverter
is necessary where appropriate low voltage appliances are unavailable or expensive or in
larger systems where it is necessary to distribute the power over a wide area

Fig 2.14 Solar inverters


36

The amount of equipment needed depends on what you want the use of the system is. In
the simplest systems, the current power generated by is connected directly to the load.
However, if the energy is required to be store batteries and charge controller are
required. Depending on the needs, balance-of-system equipment could account for half
of the total system costs. The system supplier will be able to tell exactly what equipment
are needed.

2.4 Types of PV systems


2.4.1 Stand Alone systems
These systems are generally employed where there is no availability of grid power. The
system operates autonomously and supplies power to the electrical loads independent of
the electric utility. The energy created by the Solar Panel array is stored in batteries.
Whenever electricity is a needed, the energy is drawn from batteries.

Figure 2.15(a): A circuit diagram of solar installation with DC and AC loads

Fig 2.15(b) Flow chart of a stand-alone system


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The major balance-of-system equipments for stand-alone systems are:


Batteries
Charge controller
Power conditioning equipment
Safety equipment
Meters and instrumentation

2.4.2 Grid Connected systems


A grid-connected system powers the home or small business with renewable energy
during those periods when the sun is shining. Any excess electricity produced is fed
back into the grid. When renewable resources are unavailable, electricity from the grid
supplies your needs, thus eliminating the expense of electricity storage devices like
batteries.

38

Flowchart 2.2 a grid tied system


39

If more electricity is used than the system feeds into the grid during a given month, the
difference between what energy used and produced is to be paid.
The balance of system components required are:
Power conditioning equipment
Safety equipment
Meters and instrumentation.

2.5 Operation

F
lowchart 2.3 operation with AC & DC load

40

The solar modules convert solar energy directly into dc power which can be used
directly by dc loads and also by ac loads with the use of an inverter. A battery charges
and discharges according to the requirement of the household or establishment.

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3. System Components
A basic photovoltaic system consists of five main components:
i. solar panel
ii. Batteries
iii. Regulator
iv. Load
v. converter
The panels are responsible for collecting the energy of the sun and generating electricity.
The battery stores the electrical energy for later use. The regulator ensures that panel and
battery are working together in an optimal fashion. The load refers to any device that
requires electrical power, and is the sum of the consumption of all electrical equipment
connected to the system. It is important to remember that solar panels and batteries use
direct current (DC).If the range of operational voltage of your equipment does not fit the
voltage supplied by your battery, it will also be necessary to include some type of
converter. If the equipment that you want to power uses a different DC voltage than the
one supplied by the battery, you will need to use a DC/DC con-verter. If some of your
equipment requires AC power, you will need to use a DC/AC converter, also known as
an inverter. Every electrical system should also incorporate various safety devices in the
event that something goes wrong. These devices include proper wiring, cir-cuit breakers,
surge protectors, fuses, ground rods, lighting arrestors, etc.
III.1

Photovoltaic system components

42

43

44

When all of the components are in balance and are properly maintained, the system will
support itself for years.

Fig 3.1: A basic solar PV system

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Fig 3.2 : A working model of the basic solar PV system at NS POWER.

3.2 The solar panel


An individual solar panel is made of many solar cells. The cells are electrically
connected to provide a particular value of current and voltage. The individual cells are
properly encapsulated to provide isolation and protection from humidity and corrosion.

Fig 3.3 : The connection of cells to form a solar panel.


There are different types of modules available on the market, depending on the power
demands of your application. The most common modules are composed of 32 or 36
solar cells of crystalline silicon. These cells are all of equal size, wired in series, and
encapsulated between glass and plastic material, using a polymer resin (EVA) as a
thermal insulator. The surface area of the module is typically between 0.1 and 0.5 m2.
Solar panels usually have two electrical contacts, one positive and one negative. Some
panels also include extra contacts to allow the installation of bypass diodes across
individual cells. Bypass diodes protect the panel against a phenomenon known as hotspots. A hot-spot occurs when some of the cells are in shadow while the rest of the
panel is in full sun. Rather than producing energy, shaded cells behave as a load that
dissipates energy. In this situa-tion, shaded cells can see a significant increase in
temperature (about 85 to 100C.) Bypass diodes will prevent hot-spots on shaded cells,
46

but reduce the maximum voltage of the panel. They should only be used when shading is
unavoidable. It is a much better solution to expose the entire panel to full sun whenever
possible.

Fig 3.4 : Different IV Curves.


The current (A) changes with the irradiance, and the voltage (V) changes with the
temperature. The electrical performance of a solar module it represented by the IV
characteristic curve, which represents the current that is provided based on the voltage
generated for a certain solar radiation. The curve represents all the possible values of
voltage-current. The curves depend on two main factors: the temperature and the solar
radiation received by the cells. For a given solar cell area, the current generated is
directly proportional to solar irradiance (G), while the voltage reduces slightly with an
increase of temperature. A good regulator will try to maximize the amount of energy that
a panel provides by tracking the point that provides maximum power (V x I). The
maximum power corresponds to the knee of the I-V curve.

3.2.1 Types of modules

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Fig 3.5 : The different components of a solar panel.


Various module classifications are used commercially. The general term 'module' (or
panel) is defined more precisely by highlighting the module's specific qualities.
Modules can be classified according to:
Cell type:
- Mono-crystalline modules;
- Polycrystalline modules;
- Thin-film modules (amorphous, CdTe and CIS modules).
Encapsulation material:
- Teflon modules;
- PVB modules;
- resin modules (the EVA classification module is not generally used).
Encapsulation technology:
- Lamination (with EVA, PVB or Teflon; see the following section on
'Laminates').
Substrate:
- Film modules;
- Glass-film modules (or glass-Tedlar modules);
- Metal-film modules;
- Acrylic plastic modules;
- Glass-glass modules.
Frame structure:
- Framed modules;
- Frameless modules.
Construction-specific additional functions:
- Toughened safety glass (TSG) modules;
- Laminated safety glass (LSG) modules;
- Insulating glass modules;
- Insulating glass modules for overhead glazing;
- Stepped insulating glass modules;
- Laminated glass modules.

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3.2.2 Solar Panel Parameters

Fig 3.6 : The solar panel parameters and their role in efficiency calculation.
Note:- The panel parameters values change for other conditions of irradiance and
temperature. Manufacturers will sometimes include graphs or tables with values for
conditions different from the standard. You should check the performance values at the
panel temperatures that are likely to match your particular installation. Panel parameters
for system sizing To calculate the number of panels required to cover a given load, you
just need to know the current and voltage at the point of maximum power: IPmax and
VPmax. You should assume a loss of efficiency of 5% in your calculations to
compensate for the inadequacy of the panel to work at the maximum power point at all
the times.
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Interconnection of panels
A solar panel array is a collection of solar panels that are electrically inter-connected and
installed on some type of support structure. Using a solar panel array allows you to
generate greater voltage and current than is possible with a single solar panel. The panels
are interconnected in such a way that the voltage generated is close to (but greater than)
the level of voltage of the batteries, and that the current generated is sufficient to feed
the equipment and to charge the batteries. Connecting solar panels in series increases the
generated voltage. Connecting panels in parallel increases the current. The number of
panels used should be increased until the amount of power generated slightly exceeds
the demands of your load. It is very important that all of the panels in your array are as
identical as possible. In an array, you should use panels of the same brand and
characteristics because any difference in their operating conditions will have a big
impact on the health and performance of your system.

Fig3.7: Interconnection of panels in parallel. The voltage remains constant while the
current duplicates.

3.3 The battery


The battery hosts a certain reversible chemical reaction that stores electrical energy
that can later be retrieved when needed. Electrical energy is transformed into chemical
energy when the battery is being charged, and the reverse happens when the battery is
discharged. A battery is formed by a set of elements or cells arranged in series. For
example, Lead acid batteries consist of two submerged lead electrodes in an electrolytic
solution of water and sulfuric acid. A potential difference of about 2 volts takes place
between the electrodes, depending on the instantaneous value of the charge state of the
battery. The most common batteries in photovoltaic solar applications have a nominal
voltage of 12 or 24 volts. A 12 V battery therefore contains 6 cells in series.

50

The battery serves two important purposes in a photovoltaic system:


To provide electrical energy to the system when energy is not supplied by the array of
solar panels, and
To store excess energy generated by the panels whenever that energy exceeds the load.
The battery experiences a cyclical process of charging and discharging, depending on
the presence or absence of sunlight. During the hours that there is sun, the array of
panels produces electrical energy. The energy that is not consumed immediately it is
used to charge the battery. During the hours of absence of sun, any demand of electrical
energy is supplied by the battery, thereby discharging it. These cycles of charge and
discharge occur whenever the energy produced by the panels does not match the energy
required to support the load. When there is sufficient sun and the load is light, the
batteries will charge. Obviously, the batteries will discharge at night whenever any
amount of power is required. The batteries will also discharge when the irradiance is
insufficient to cover the requirements of the load (due to the natural variation of
climatological conditions, clouds, dust, etc.)
3.3.1 Battery Bank (A CEL Standard)

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3.3.2 Types of batteries


Many different battery technologies exist, and are intended for use in a variety of
different applications. The most suitable type for photovoltaic applications is the
stationary battery, designed to have a fixed location and for scenarios where the
power consumption is more or less irregular. "Stationary" batteries can
accommodate deep discharge cycles, but they are not designed to produce high
currents in brief periods of time.

52

Stationary batteries can use an electrolyte that is alkaline (such as NickelCadmium) or acidic (such as Lead-Acid). Stationary batteries based on NickelCadmium are recommended for their high reliability and resistance whenever
possible. Unfortunately, they tend to be much more expensive and difficult to
obtain than sealed Lead-Acid batteries. Mounting
Valve Regulated Lead Acid (VRLA) Rechargeable Lead Acid Tubular Positive
Plate accelerates, which can cause the same type of oxidation that takes places
during overcharging. This will obviously reduce the life expectancy of battery.
This problem can be compensated partially in car batteries by using a low density
of dissolution (a specific gravity of 1.25 when the battery is totally charged).
As the temperature is reduced, the useful life of the battery increases. But if the
temperature is too low, you run the risk of freezing the electrolyte. The freezing
temperature depends on the density of the solution, which is also related to the
state of charge of the battery. The lower the density, the greater the risk of
freezing. In areas of low temperatures, you should avoid deeply discharging the
batteries (that is, DoDmax is effectively reduced.)
The temperature also changes the relation between voltage and charge. It is
preferable to use a regulator which adjusts the low voltage disconnect and
reconnect parameters according to temperature. The temperature sensor of the
regulator should be fixed to the battery using tape or some other simple method.
In hot areas it is important to keep the batteries as cool as possible. The batteries
must be stored in a shaded area and never get direct sunlight. It's also desirable to
place the batteries on a small support to allow air to flow under them, thus
increase the cooling.

3.4 The power charge regulator


The power charge regulator is also known as charge controller, voltage regulator, chargedischarge controller or charge-discharge and load controller. The regulator sits between
the array of panels, the batteries, and your equipment or loads. Significance - Remember
that the voltage of a battery, although always close to 2 V per cell, varies according to its
state of charge. By monitoring the voltage of the battery, the regulator prevents
overcharging or over discharging. Regulators used in solar applications should be
connected in series: they disconnect the array of panels from the battery to avoid
overcharging, and they disconnect the battery from the load to avoid over discharging.
The connection and disconnection is done by means of switches which can be of two
types: electromechanical (relays) or solid state (bipolar transistor, MOSFET).
Regulators should never be connected in parallel.
In order to protect the battery from gasification, the switch opens the charging circuit
when the voltage in the battery reaches its high voltage disconnect (HVD) or cut-off set
point. The low voltage disconnect (LVD) prevents the battery from over discharging by
disconnecting or shedding the load. To prevent continuous connections and
disconnections the regulator will not connect back the loads until the battery reaches a
53

low reconnect voltage (LRV). The most modern regulators are also able to automatically
disconnect the panels during the night to avoid discharging of the battery. They can also
periodically overcharge the battery to improve their life, and they may use a mechanism
known as pulse width modulation (PWM) to prevent excessive gassing.
As the peak power operating point of the array of panels will vary with
temperature and solar illumination, new regulators are capable of constantly
tracking the maximum point of power of the solar array. This feature is known as
maximum power point tracking (MPPT).
Circuit implementation

Fig 3.11: Circuit diagram of a charge controller.


Regulator Parameters
When selecting a regulator for your system, you should at least know the
operating voltage and the maximum current that the regulator can handle.
The operating Voltage will be 12, 24, or 48 V. The maximum current must be 20%
bigger than the current provided by the array of panels connected to the regulator.
Other features and data of interest include:
Specific values for LVD, LRV and HVD.
Support for temperature compensation. The voltage that indicates the state of
charge of the battery vary with temperature. For that reason some regulators are
able to measure the battery temperature and correct the different cut-off and
reconnection values.

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Instrumentation and gauges


The most common instruments measure the voltage of the panels and batteries, the state
of charge (SoC) or Depth of Discharge (DoD). Some regulators include special alarms to
indicate that the panels or loads have been disconnected; LVD or HVD has been
reached, etc.

3.5 Converters
The regulator provides DC power at a specific voltage. Converters and inverters are used
to adjust the voltage to match the requirements of your load.
3.5.1 DC/DC Converters
DC/DC converters transform a continuous voltage to another continuous voltage
of a different value. There are two conversion methods which can be used to adapt
the voltage from the batteries: linear conversion and switching conversion.
Linear conversion lowers the voltage from the batteries by converting excess
energy to heat. This method is very simple but is obviously inefficient.
Switching conversion generally uses a magnetic component to temporarily store
the energy and transform it to another voltage. The resulting voltage can be
greater, less than, or the inverse (negative) of the input voltage.
The efficiency of a linear regulator decreases as the difference between the input
voltage and the output voltage increases. For example, if we want to convert from
12 V to 6 V, the linear regulator will have an efficiency of only 50%. A standard
switching regulator has an efficiency of at least 80%.
3.5.2 DC/AC Converter or Inverter
Basic Principle: An inverter converts the DC electricity from sources such as batteries,
solar panels, or fuel cells to AC electricity. The electricity can be at any required voltage;
in particular it can operate AC equipment designed for mains operation.
THE GENERAL CASE
Inverters are used when your equipment requires AC power. Inverters chop and invert
the DC current to generate a square wave that is later filtered to approximate a sine wave
and eliminate undesired harmonics. Very few inverters actually supply a pure sine wave
as output. Most models available on the market produce what is known as "modified
sine wave", as their voltage output is not a pure sinusoid. When it comes to efficiency,
modified sine wave inverters perform better than pure sinusoidal inverters. A
transformer allows AC power to be converted to any desired voltage, but at the same
frequency. Inverters, plus rectifiers for DC, can be designed to convert from any voltage,
AC or DC, to any other voltage, also AC or DC, at any desired frequency. The output
power can never exceed the input power, but efficiencies can be high, with a small
proportion of the power dissipated as waste heat.
55

Circuit description

Fig 3.12: A realization of the inverter with a transformer with a movable switch and a
current source.
Auto-switching device implemented with two transistors and split winding auto
transformer in place of the mechanical switch.
OUTPUT

Fig 3.13 : The output achieved from the inverter with the subsequent harmonics.
Square waveform with fundamental sine wave component, 3rd harmonic and 5th
harmonic. In one simple inverter circuit, DC power is connected to a transformer
through the centre tap of the primary winding.. A switch is rapidly switched back and
forth to allow current to flow back to the DC source following two alternate paths
56

through one end of the primary winding and then the other. The alternation of the
direction of current in the primary winding of the transformer produces alternating
current (AC) in the secondary circuit. The electromechanical version of the switching
device includes two stationary contacts and a spring supported moving contact. The
spring holds the movable contact against one of the stationary contacts and an
electromagnet pulls the movable contact to the opposite stationary contact. The current
in the electromagnet is interrupted by the action of the switch so that the switch
continually switches rapidly back and forth.
Circuit Implementation

Fig 3.14: A Single phase transistor bridge inverter

Fig 3.15 : 500 kW, 3 phase inverter


57

Mechanism of Inverter- An Engineers Explanation


The principal mechanism of dc-to-ac conversion consists of chopping or segmenting the
dc current into specific portions, referred to as square waves, which are filtered and
shaped into sinusoidal ac waveforms. Any power waveform, when analyzed from a
mathematical point of view, essentially consists of the superimposition of many
sinusoidal waveforms, referred to as harmonics. The first harmonic represents a pure
sinusoidal waveform, which has a unit base wavelength, amplitude, and frequency of
repetition over a unit of time called a cycle. Additional waveforms with higher cycles,
when superimposed on the base waveform, add or subtract from the amplitude of the
base sinusoidal waveform. The resulting combined base waveform and higher harmonics
produce a distorted wave shape that resembles a distorted sinusoidal wave. The higher
the harmonic content, the squarer the wave shape becomes. Chopped dc output, derived
from the solar power, is considered to be a numerous superimposition of odd and even
numbers of harmonics. To obtain a relatively clean sinusoidal output, most inverters
employ electronic circuitry to filter a large number of harmonics. Filter circuits consist
of specially designed inductive and capacitor circuits that trap or block certain unwanted
harmonics, the energy of which is dissipated as heat. Some types of inverters, mainly of
earlier design technology, make use of inductor coils to produce sinusoidal wave shapes.
In general, dc-to-ac inverters are intricate electronic power conversion equipment
designed to convert direct current to a single- or three-phase current that replicates the
regular electrical services provided by utilities. Special electronics within inverters, in
addition to converting direct current to alternating current, are designed to regulate the
output voltage, frequency, and current under specified load conditions.
Inverters also incorporate special electronics that allow them to automatically
synchronize with other inverters when connected in parallel.
Note-Be aware that not all the equipment will accept a modified sine wave as voltage
input. Most commonly, some laser printers will not work with a modified sine wave
inverter. Motors will work, but they may consume more power than if they are fed with
a pure sine wave. In addition, DC power supplies tend to warm up more, and audio
amplifiers can emit a buzzing sound.
3.5.3 Additional Features of the Inverters
Aside from the type of waveform, some important features of inverters include:
Reliability in the presence of surges. Inverters have two power ratings: one for
continuous power, and a higher rating for peak power. They are capable of
providing the peak power for a very short amount of time, as when starting a
motor. The inverter should also be able to safely interrupt itself (with a circuit
breaker or fuse) in the event of a short circuit, or if the requested power is too
high.
Conversion efficiency. Inverters are most efficient when providing 50% to 90% of
their continuous power rating. You should select an inverter that most closely
58

matches your load requirements. The manufacturer usually provides the


performance of the inverter at 70% of its nominal power.
Battery charging. Many inverters also incorporate the inverse function: the
possibility of charging batteries in the presence of an alternative source of current
(grid, generator, etc). This type of inverter is known as a charger/inverter.
Automatic fall-over. Some inverters can switch automatically between different
sources of power (grid, generator, solar) depending on what is available.
When using telecommunication equipment, it is best to avoid the use of DC/AC
converters and feed them directly from a DC source. Most communications equipment
can accept a wide range of input voltage. A special type of inverter, referred to as the
grid-connected type, incorporates synchronization circuitry that allows the production of
sinusoidal waveforms in unison with the electrical service grid. When the inverter is
connected to the electrical service grid, it can effectively act as an ac power generation
source. Grid-type inverters used in grid-connected solar power systems are strictly
regulated by utility agencies that provide net metering.
Some inverters incorporate an internal ac transfer switch that is capable of accepting an
output from an ac-type standby generator. In such designs, the inverters include special
electronics that transfer power from the generator to the load.
3.6 Equipment or load
It should be obvious that as power requirements increase, the expense of the
photovoltaic system also increases. It is therefore critical to match the size of the system
as closely as possible to the expected load. When designing the system you must first
make a realistic estimate of the maximum consumption. Once the installation is in place,
the established maximum consumption must be respected in order to avoid frequent
power failures.
Home Appliances
The use of photovoltaic solar energy is not recommended for heat-exchange applications
(electrical heating, refrigerators, toasters, etc.) Whenever possible, energy should be
used sparingly using low power appliances.
Here are some points to keep in mind when choosing appropriate equipment for use with
a solar system:
The photovoltaic solar energy is suitable for illumination. In this case, the use of
halogen light bulbs or fluorescent lamps is mandatory. Although these lamps are
more expensive, they have much better energy efficiency than incandescent light
bulbs. LED lamps are also a good choice as they are very efficient and are fed
with DC.
It is possible to use photovoltaic power for appliances that require low and
constant consumption (as in a typical case, the TV). Smaller televisions use less
power than larger televisions. Also consider that a black-and-white TV consumes
about half the power of a colour TV.
59

Photovoltaic solar energy is not recommended for any application that transforms
energy into heat (thermal energy). Use solar heating or butane as alternative.
Conventional automatic washing machines will work, but you should avoid the
use of any washing programs that include centrifuged water heating.
If you must use a refrigerator, it should consume as little power as possible. There
are specialized refrigerators that work in DC, although their consumption can be
quite high (around 1000 Wh/day).
3.7 Power Conditioning Unit

Fig 3.16: The components of a power conditioning unit.


The Single phase Power Conditioning Unit (PCU) provides single-phase AC power to
the specified loads. The Power Conditioning unit mainly comprises of MPPT, PWM
Solar Charge Controller and a single phase inverters (02 Nos.).
The MPPT Charger is microprocessor based system designed to provide the
necessary DC/DC conversion to maximize the power from the SPV array to
charge the battery bank. The charge controller is equipped with necessary
software that allows precise charging of the battery bank. Many protection
features are also included to ensure that no abnormal or out of range charge
conditions are encountered by the battery bank. The system incorporates a front to
panel display with LEDs and a switch to indicate the "operational status" and
"fault status" of the system, reset system faults and implement various operating
modes.
The high efficiency inverter converts the DC power available from the
Array/Battery back into single phase AC, by incorporating IGBT devices for
power conversion.
60

During day time when the solar power is available, the charge controller charges
the battery by transferring as much as solar current to battery as required. During
this time the battery voltage is monitored continuously. When in the night time,
the solar energy is not available the system enables the battery to deliver the
current through inverter to meet the demand for powering the street lights.
The microprocessor controlled inverter incorporates Pulse Width Modulation
(PWM) technology and incorporates all the desired safety features.
Important features/protections in the PCU:

Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT)


Array ground fault detection.
LCD keypad operator interface menu driven.
Automatic fault conditions reset for all parameters like voltage, frequency and/or
black out.
MOV type surge arrestors on AC & DC terminals for over voltage protection from
lightening induced surges.
PCU operation from -5 to 55 C,
All parameters shall be accessible through an industry standard communication
link.
Over load capacity (for 30 sec.) shall be 150% of continuous rating.
Since the PCU is to be used in solar photovoltaic energy system, it shall have high
operational efficiency > 92%. The idling current at no load shall not exceed two
percent of the full load current.
In PCU, there shall be a direct current isolation provided at the output by means of
a suitable isolating transformer.

Common Technical Specifications:


Type: Self commuted, current regulated, high frequency IGBT base
Output Voltage Waveform: 1cp, 240VAC (5%)
Output Frequency: Pure Sine wave: 50 Hz 3 Hz
Continuous Rating: As per table
Nominal DC Input: 48/120 VDC
Total harmonic Distortion : <3%
Operating temp, range: 5 to 50 C
Housing Cabinet: IP 20
Inverter Efficiency: >92%

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3.8 Junction Boxes


The junction boxes shall be dust, vermin, and waterproof and made of FRP / ABS /
Thermo Plastic (iP65) must be of Hansel or any equivalent reputed make. The terminals
shall be connected to copper bus bar arrangement of proper sizes. The junction boxes
shall have suitable cable entry points fitted with cable glands of appropriate sizes for
both incoming and outgoing cables. Suitable markings shall be provided on the bus bar
for easy identification and cable ferrules shall be fitted at the cable termination points for
identification.
The junction boxes shall have suitable arrangement for the following:
Combine groups of modules into independent charging sub-arrays that shall be
wired to the controller.
Provide arrangement for disconnection for each of the groups.
Provide a test point for each sub-group for quick fault location.
To provide group array isolation.
The rating of the JB's shall be suitable with adequate safety factor to inter connect
the Solar PV array.
Metal oxide variestors shall be provided inside the Array Junction Boxes.

3.9 Wiring
An important component of the installation is the wiring, as proper wiring will
ensure efficient energy transfer.
Issues specific to solar power relate to the fact that all installations are of the
outdoor type, and as a result all system components, including the PV panel,
support structures, wiring, raceways, junction boxes, collector boxes, and
inverters must be selected and designed to withstand harsh atmospheric conditions
and must operate under extreme temperatures, humidity, and wind turbulence and
gust conditions.
Specifically, the electrical wiring must withstand, in addition to the preceding
environmental adversities, degradation under constant exposure to ultraviolet
radiation and heat. Factors to be taken into consideration when designing solar
power wiring include the PV modules short-circuit current (Isc) value, which
represents the maximum module output when output leads are shorted.
For the electrical installation of a photovoltaic system, a distinction is made
between module or string cables, the DC main cable and the AC connection cable.
The electrical connecting cables between the individual modules of a solar
generator and to the generator junction box are termed 'module cables' or 'string
cables'. These cables are generally used outdoors. In order to ensure earth fault
and short-circuit proof cable laying, the positive and the negative poles may not
62

be laid together in the same cable. Single-wire cables with double insulation have
proven to be a practicable solution and offer high reliability.

Fig 3.17: The cable requirements


AC connection cable
The AC connection cable links the inverter to the electricity grid via the protection
equipment. In the case of three-phase inverters, the connection to the low voltage grid is
made using a five-pole cable. For single-phase inverters, a three-pole cable is employed.

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3.10 The Balance of System Standards


The BoS items / components of the SPV power plant must conform to the latest edition
of IEC/ equivalent BIS Standards as specified in the table.

Table 3.1: The BoS items / components with BIS Standards specifications

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3.11 Solar Power System Configuration and Classifications


There are four types of solar power systems:
Directly connected dc solar power system
Stand-alone dc solar power system with battery backup
Stand-alone hybrid solar power system with generator and battery backup
Grid-connected solar power cogeneration system
3.11.1 Directly connected dc solar power system
As shown in Fig 3.18, the solar system configuration consists of a required number of
solar photovoltaic cells, commonly referred to as PV modules, connected in series or in
parallel to attain the required voltage output. Fig 3.19 shows four PV modules that have
been connected in parallel.
The positive output of each module is protected by an appropriate over-current device,
such as a fuse. Paralleled output of the solar array is in turn connected to a dc motor via
a two-pole single throw switch. In some instances, each individual PV module is also
protected with a forward-biased diode connected to the positive output of individual
solar panels.

Fig 3.18: A three-panel solar array diagram.

65

Fig 3.19: A directly connected solar power dc pump diagram.


An appropriate surge protector connected between the positive and negative
supply provides protection against lightning surges, which could damage the solar
array system components. In order to provide equipment-grounding bias, the
chassis or enclosures of all PV modules and the dc motor pump are tied together
by means of grounding clamps. The system ground is in turn connected to an
appropriate grounding rod. All PV interconnecting wires are sized and the proper
type selected to prevent power losses caused by a number of factors, such as
exposure to the sun, excessive wire resistance, and additional requirements that
are mandated by the IEC.
The photovoltaic solar system described is typically used as an agricultural
application, where either regular electrical service is unavailable or the cost is
prohibitive. A floating or submersible dc pump connected to a dc PV array can
provide a constant stream of well water that can be accumulated in a reservoir for
farm or agricultural use. In subsequent sections we will discuss the specifications
and use of all system components used in solar power cogeneration applications.

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3.11.2 Stand-alone dc solar power system with BATTERY BACKUP


The solar power photovoltaic array configuration shown in Fig, a dc system with battery
backup, is essentially the same as the one without the battery except that there are a few
additional components that are required to provide battery charge stability.

Fig 3.20: Battery-backed solar powerdriven dc pump.


Stand-alone PV system arrays are connected in series to obtain the desired dc
voltage, such as 12, 24, or 48 V; outputs of that are in turn connected to a dc
collector panel equipped with specially rated over current devices, such as
ceramic-type fuses.
The positive lead of each PV array conductor is connected to a dedicated fuse, and
the negative lead is connected to a common neutral bus. All fuses as well are
connected to a common positive bus. The output of the dc collector bus,which
represents the collective amperes and voltages of the overall array group, is
connected to a dc charge controller, which regulates the current output and
prevents the voltage level from exceeding the maximum needed for charging the
batteries.
The output of the charge controller is connected to the battery bank by means of a
dual dc cutoff disconnect. As depicted in Fig 3.20, the cut-off switch, when turned
off for safety measures, disconnects the load and the PV arrays simultaneously.
Under normal operation, during the daytime when there is adequate solar
insulation, the load is supplied with dc power while simultaneously charging the
battery. When sizing the solar power system, take into account that the dc power
output from the PV arrays should be adequate to sustain the connected load and
the battery trickle charge requirements.
Battery storage sizing depends on a number of factors, such as the duration of an
uninterrupted power supply to the load when the solar power system is
inoperative, which occurs at nighttime or during cloudy days. Note that battery
67

banks inherently, when in operation, produce a 20 to 30 percent power loss due to


heat, which also must be taken into consideration.
When designing a solar power system with a battery backup, the designer must
determine the appropriate location for the battery racks and room ventilation, to
allow for dissipation of the hydrogen gas generated during the charging process.
Sealed-type batteries do not require special ventilation.
All dc wiring calculations discussed take into consideration losses resulting from
solar exposure, battery cable current derating, and equipment current resistance
requirements.
3.11.3 Stand-alone hybrid AC SOLAR POWER SYSTEM with generator and
battery backup
A stand-alone hybrid solar power configuration is essentially identical to the dc solar
power system just discussed, except that it incorporates two additional components, as
shown in Fig 3.11.4. The first component is an inverter. Inverters are electronic power
equipment designed to convert direct current into alternating current. The second
component is a standby emergency dc generator.

Fig 3.21: Stand-alone hybrid solar power system with standby generator.

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3.11.4 Grid-connected solar power COGENERATION SYSTEM


With reference to Fig 3.11.5, a connected solar power system diagram, the power
cogeneration system configuration is similar to the hybrid system just described. The
essence of a grid-connected system is net metering. Standard service meters are
odometer-type counting wheels that record power consumption at a service point by
means of a rotating disc, which is connected to the counting mechanism. The rotating
discs operate by an electro physical principle called eddy current, which consists of
voltage and current measurement sensing coils that generate a proportional power
measurement.
New electric meters make use of digital electronic technology that registers power
measurement by solid-state current- and voltage-sensing devices that convert analog
measured values into binary values that are displayed on the meter bezels by liquid
crystal display (LCD) readouts. In general, conventional meters only display power
consumption; that is, the meter counting mechanism is unidirectional. Net metering The
essential difference between a grid-connected system and a stand-alone system is that
inverters, which are connected to the main electrical service, must have an inherent line
frequency synchronization capability to deliver the excess power to the grid. Net meters,
unlike conventional meters, have a capability to record consumed or generated power in
an exclusive summation format; that is, the recorded power registration is the net
amount of power consumedthe total power used minus the amount of power that is
produced by the solar power cogeneration system.

Figure 3.22 : Grid-connected hybrid solar power system with standby generator.

69

Net meters are supplied and installed by utility companies that provide grid-connection
service systems. Net metered solar power co-generators are subject to specific
contractual agreements and are subsidized by state and municipal governmental
agencies. When designing net metering solar power cogeneration systems, the solar
power designers and their clients must familiarize themselves with the rebate fund
requirements. Essential to any solar power implementation is the preliminary design and
economic feasibility study needed for project cost justification and return on investment
analysis.
Grid-connection isolation transformer In order to prevent spurious noise transfer from
the grid to the solar power system electronics, a delta-y isolation transformer is placed
between the main service switchgear disconnects and the inverters. The delta winding of
the isolation transformer, which is connected to the service bus, circulates noise
harmonics in the winding and dissipates the energy as heat. Isolation transformers are
also used to convert or match the inverter output voltages to the grid. Most often, in
commercial installations, inverter output voltages range from 208 to 230 V (three phase),
which must be connected to an electric service grid that supplies 277/480 V power.
Some inverter manufacturers incorporate output isolation transformers as an integral part
of the inverter system, which eliminates the use of external transformation and ensures
noise isolation.

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4 DESIGN

Design of a solar PV system is the process of estimation of load, sizing of the batteries
and sizing of the solar modules that are used in the PV system.

4.1 Introduction and basic principles


The function of a PV system is to power electrical loads .The loads maybe AC loads or
DC loads. The solar array produces DC power only during sunshine hours. So if the
loads are to be powered during non-sunshine hours energy storage devices are required.
Lead acid batteries and Nickel cadmium batteries serve this purpose. To feed the AC
loads an inverter is required. Also auxiliary power sources such as diesel generator, wind
generator or by connecting the PV system to the grid.
Accordingly, PV systems maybe:
(a) Stand-alone PV systems
(b) Grid-connected PV systems
(c) Hybrid PV systems
As explained in the second chapter a stand-alone system is the one which is not
connected to the power grid. In contrast, the PV systems connected to the grid are called
grid-connected PV systems. Hybrid PV systems could be stand-alone or grid connected
type, but have at least one more source other than the PV.

71

Fig 4.1 Indias first two megawatt grid connected project, commissioned in the state of
West Bengal in east India.
Source: pv-magazine.com
Some of the basic Principles to Follow When Designing a Quality PV System
i. A packaged system should be selected that meets the owner's needs. Customer criteria
for a system may include reduction in monthly electricity bill, environmental benefits,
desire for backup power, initial budget constraints, etc. The PV array should be sized
and oriented to provide the expected electrical power and energy.
ii. It should be ensured that the roof area or other installation site is capable of handling
the desired system size.
iii. Sunlight and weather resistant materials for all outdoor equipment should be
specified.
iv. Array should be located to minimize shading from foliage, vent pipes, and adjacent
structures.
v. System should be designed in compliance with all applicable building and electrical
codes.
vi. The system should be designed with a minimum of electrical losses due to wiring,
fuses, switches, and inverters.
vii. The battery system should be properly housed and managed, should batteries be
required.
viii. It should be ensured that the design meets local utility interconnection requirements.
PV systems are designed and sized to meet a given load requirement. PV system sizing
and design involves:
1. PV system design involves a decision on which configuration is to be adopted to meet
the load requirement as explained above.
2. Once the system configuration is decided the size or capacity of the various
components is determined.

72

A PV system design and sizing process passes through the following two stages
depending on the level of details used in components sizing:
1. Approximate design
2. Precise design
In the approximate design, several simplifying assumptions are made with respect to the
component performance (without referring to the actual data sheets), solar radiation data,
seasonal variation in the load performance variation of PV panel with season, etc. In the
precise design, however, attention is given to accurate details of all the above factors.

4.2 System type selection


One has to determine the configuration of PV system and which components (PV panels,
load, battery, controllers, diesel generator, etc.) are to be connected in a system. The
configuration and design of the system will change depending on
1. The type of the load (AC or DC, light or heavy, etc.),
2. The load requirement (critical/non-critical, reliability, cost, etc.)
3. Its geographical location (wind resources, solar resources, proximity with grid, etc.).
A solar PV system configuration can be very simple, incorporating only two components
(load and the PV panel), or it can be very complex, containing several power sources,
sophisticated controllers and multiple energy storage units to meet stringent load
requirements. In the previous chapter the various configurations of a PV system are

73

explained. The establishment or household owner has to choose from these


configurations while keeping in mind the following parameters
Load requirements
Resource availability
Performance of the system
Reliability of the system
Cost of the system

4.3 Home Appliances


The use of photovoltaic solar energy is not recommended for heat-exchange applications
(electrical heating, refrigerators, toasters, etc.) whenever possible, energy should be used
sparingly using low power appliances.

Fig 4.2Some of the appliances which can be run by solar PV system


Here are some points to keep in mind when choosing appropriate equipment for use with
a solar system:
i. The photovoltaic solar energy is suitable for illumination. In this case, the use of
halogen light bulbs or fluorescent lamps is mandatory. Although these lamps are more
expensive, they have much better energy efficiency than incandescent light bulbs. LED
lamps are also a good choice as they are very efficient and are fed with DC.
ii. It is possible to use photovoltaic power for appliances that require low and constant
consumption (as in a typical case, the TV). Smaller televisions use less power than larger
televisions. Also consider that a black-and-white TV consumes about half the power of a
colour TV.
iii. Photovoltaic solar energy is not recommended for any application that transforms
energy into heat (thermal energy). Use solar heating or butane as alternative.
iv. Conventional automatic washing machines will work, but one should avoid the use of
any washing programs that include centrifuged water heating.

74

v. If one must use a refrigerator, it should consume as little power as possible. There are
specialized refrigerators that work in DC, although their consumption can be quite high
(around 1000 Wh/day).
The estimation of total consumption is a fundamental step in sizing the solar system.
Here is a table that gives a general idea of the power consumption that one can expect
from different appliances.

Table 4.1 Power rating of some home appliances

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4.4 Illustration and Flowchart for design of habitat PV system

Flowchart 4.1 SCHEMA A Illustration and Flowchart for Design of Habitat PV System
Part A of the flowchart refers to load estimation, part B refers to sizing of batter and part
C refers to sizing of PV modules. These processes are explained in detail in the
following topics.

4.5Design process
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The process is explained with the help of an example. A solar PV system is to be


designed wherein the load consists of a CFL, TV, fan, and refrigerator and computer.
The system should allow the use of loads in the nonsunshine hours. The operating hours
and the power rating of these loads are

Table 4.2 illustrative habitat appliance use in a day


The formulae for calculations are marked in RED and the calculations done for the solar
PV system to be designed is marked in BLUE.
4.5.1 Load estimation
In this step the energy required for the operation of the load is determined. While
estimating the load the following parameters are considered:
Type of load, DC or AC (most of the appliances use AC power);
Number of loads (e.g. Lighting, cooling, TV etc.)
Power voltage and current ratings of each load
Hours of load operation per day
Energy required per day by the load and
Efficiency of the power converter
As done in the table 4.3:
The power rating (W) is to be multiplied with the no. of hours of operation of all
the loads and then it is all added up to find the total daily energy consumption.

Table 4.3: Calculation of load in Watt-hr

77

Separate tables can be made for AC and DC loads. But when the calculation is done the
both total energy of both theloads is to be considered. In this example however we have
considered a house with only AC loads. It is important to keep in mind that the system
should be designed for the worst case scenario, energy required changes from day to day
and season to season basis. The system should meet the peak energy requirement or the
peak load demand i.e. the highest requirement in a particular day of the year. However a
reliable system design will add to the cost of the system. Thus a balance has to be struck
between reliability and cost.
4.5.1 Inverter rating
As explained in the previous chapter an inverter supplies power to AC loads and
converter supplies power to DC loads. The inverter and converter should be capable of
handling input current from the battery and output current to the load. In the example
since there are only AC loads only inverters are used. Generally, input voltage varies
from 12 - 72V and current from 1 10s of Amperes. The output is fixed at 220V 60Hz.
In this step the inverter rating is calculated. For this:
The sum of all the loads connected to the inverter is taken

Table 4.4: Illustrative power (watt)use per day


4.5.3 Daily energy supplied by the inverter
Load energy is supplied to the load from the battery through the inverter. The inverter is
not 100per cent efficient it ranges from 90 97per cent. Thus the energy supplied by
inverter is more than the total load requirement as calculated in the first step.
Energy supplied by the inverter = Load energy requirement/ Efficiency of inverter
In this case inverter with 93per cent efficiency is taken
Energy supplied by inverter= 2820/0.93 = 3032.25 Wh.

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4.5.4 System voltage


System voltage is defined as the input voltage to the inverter. It depends on the battery
voltage, line current, allowable voltage drop, power loss in the cables, etc. Typically
terminal voltage of batteries are 12V, therefore system voltage are generally multiples of
12, 24, 36, 48Vetc.
High system voltage results in less power loss and voltage drop in cables. But high
system voltage also means more PV panels in series and therefore high cost. So
system voltage should be chosen after careful considerations.
In this case, a system voltage of 24V is chosen
4.5.5 Battery capacity
3032.25 Wh of energy is required to be supplied by the battery and the terminal voltage
of the battery bank should be 24 V. The parameters to be considered in sizing of batteries
are:
Depth of discharge (DoD) of battery;
Voltage and ampere-hour (Ah) capacity of the battery; and
Number of days of autonomy.
For PV applications deep discharge batteries are used with DoD in the range of 60% to
80% and batteries of capacities 25Ah, 50Ah, 100Ah, 150Ah are available.
In this case batteries of 12V 100Ah with DoD 70% are chosen
1. Usable capacity = Rated capacity x DoD
Therefore, Usable capacity = 100 x 0.7 = 70Ah
2. Now, Required charge capacity = energy that needs to be supplied by the battery/
system voltage
The energy that needs to be supplied by the battery = 3032.25 Wh
The system voltage = 24 V
Therefore, the required charge capacity = 3032.5/24= 126.3Ah
3. The total no. of batteries required = Required charge capacity/ Usable
capacity
= 126.3/ 70 = 1.8
This can be rounded off to 2 batteries.
Now because of this round off, some extra charge capacity (140 Ah instead of 126.3 Ah
required) is available to the load. These two batteries should be connected in parallel.
But 100 Ah batteries is of 12 V only, so the battery bank needs to supply the charge at 24
V (system voltage). Therefore in order to get 24 V, two 12 V batteries should be
connected in series to get 24 V terminal voltage.
Thus, in total there will be four batteries of 100Ah capacity in the battery bank,
two of them connected in series and two such series connected batteries are
connected in parallel.

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4.5.6 Consider for battery autonomy


The PV system is should be designed for some autonomy during the completely cloudy
conditions. The autonomy is defined as the number of days the battery should be able to
supply the energy to load even when for those number of days there is no sunshine
(assuming on completely cloudy days, no energy is generated by PV panels). , 2 days
autonomy means the battery bank should be able to supply the energy to the load where
there is no sunshine for 2 days. Thus, depending on the number of days of autonomy, the
battery bank size should be increased.
If total daily Ah requirement is X and the number of days of autonomy is n days,
then total Ah required including autonomy is given as:
Total Ah = X + n xX
Therefore, total Ah = 126.3 + 2 x126.3 = 378.9 Ah
Thus, in this example, battery bank size should be three times than what was derived
previously.
Now instead of 4 batteries of 12 V, 100 Ah, we would require
4 x 3 = 12 batteries of 12 V and 100 Ah.
As the autonomy day increases, the battery bank size increases adding to the cost.
Normally, high autonomy is required for the PV system requiring high reliability such as
in medical applications, defence applications, etc. Convenient number of autonomy days
should be chosen keeping in mind the cost of the system. Typically, the battery cost is
about 30% of the overall PV system cost.

Fig 4.3Series and parallel connection of batteries to supply the required energy to the
load considering 2 days autonomy
4.5.7 Daily energy generated by panels
The parameters of concern for the PV module sizing are:
Voltage, current and wattage of the module;
Solar radiation at a given location and at given time;
80

Efficiency of the batteries;


Temperature of the module;
Efficiency of the MPPT and charge controller unit; and
Dust level in working environment.
The PV panels are required to supply energy to battery which is consumed daily but not
the total energy stored in the battery bank. The energy taken out from the battery bank is
the energy required by the load on daily basis. The energy supplied by the panels will be
higher because the efficiency of the charge discharge cycle of the battery is less than
100%. It is 80 90%. An efficiency of 85% is taken in this case.
The energy supplied at the input of battery terminal = Energy supplied by the
battery/ Battery efficiency = 3032.25/0.85 = 3567.3Wh
The energy to the input terminal of the battery bank is supplied through controller
electronics (charge controller and MPPT, refer). The efficiency of the controller circuit is
generally quite high. A controller circuit efficiency of 90% is assumed.
The energy that should be supplied by the PV panels at the input of controller
circuit = Energy supplied at the input of battery terminal/Controller circuit
efficiency = 3567.3/0.9= 3963.7Wh
Thus, about 3963.7Wh energy should be generated by PV panels every day.
4.5.8 Solar radiation, capacity and number of panels
Total Ah generated by PV panels = Energy supplied by PV panels/ System voltage
= 3963.7/24= 165.1 Ah
During a day, from sunrise to sunset, the solar radiation intensities vary significantly.
Normally, the number of daily sunshine hours equivalent to 1000 W/m2 (equivalent
peak sunshine hours) is estimated for the location at which PV system needs to be
installed In India, the peak equivalent sunshine hours vary between 5 h and 7 h,
corresponding to 5000 Wh/m2 and 7000 Wh/m2-day.
For this example, there are 6HRS equivalent peak sunshine hours in the location
Total amperes to be produced = Total Ah generated by PV panels/no. of peak
sunshine hours
= 165.1/6
= 27.5A
Peak power rating is the maximum power the module will produce under 1000 W/m2
and at 25 C. A typical peak power rating of modules varies from 5 Wp to 300 Wp. PV
module of peak power rating 75 Wpis taken in this example. The manufacturers
datasheet provides the current and voltage of the module at maximum power point, the
rated Wp of module. The typical value of voltage and current of 75 Wp module at
maximum power point (Vmand Im) would be about 15 V and 5 A, respectively.
No. of modules required = Total amperes to be produced/ Imof module
= 27.5/5
= 5.5
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On rounding off 6 modules of 75 Wp are required to provide 27.5 A current.


Two modules should be put in series to get voltage higher than 24 V (system
voltage), required for charging the batteries. Thus, overall 6x2= 12 PV modules of
75 Wpis required, each row containing two modules in series and there would be
six such rows in parallel.
The interconnection of PV modules is shown.

Fig 4.4 Series and parallel connection of PV modules with their ratings that are
required to supply the energy to the load.
This completes the design of the PV systemof a solar PV system wherein the load
consists of a CFL, TV, fan, and refrigerator and computer.

Fig 4.5Complete design of solar PV system to fulfil the required load as described in
82

theexample

4.6 Wire sizing


In solar PV system appropriate dimensions (diameter and length) of the wires or cables
for interconnection of modules, batteries and loads should be used. The size of the wire
should be chosen to avoid excessive voltage drops in a line (wire or cable connecting
two points electrically). Normally, the voltage drop in the line connecting modules to
batteries should not be more than 5% of the line voltage. Also, it should be ensured that
the maximum current passing through the cables should be within the current handling
capacity of the cables.
The voltage drop for a given cable of specified material resistivity (), length (L)
and cross sectional area (A) can be estimated as:
Vd= 2 x V = 2 x I x L A
The factor of 2 in the above equation is introduced due to the fact that the length of the
cable used is actually double (for taking current to and fro) the physical distance
between PV module and the battery or the battery and the load.
The Vd should be within 5% limit of the line voltage, i.e., if the line voltage is 12V,
the voltage drop should not be more than 0.6V
Typically, the diameter of the cables used in DC electric system is higher than the
diameter of cables used in AC electrical systems. In the solar PV systems, the DC
voltage levels are normally in range of 12V to 48V (as against 220V in AC systems).
Due to this, the loads of similar power rating need to be supplied with higher current in
DC systems as compared to AC systems. If the cable of the same diameter (same length
and material as well) is used in both AC and DC systems, the voltage drop in the DC
system would be 18.5 times more than the AC system as per the above equation.
Therefore, to limit the voltage drop in DC system, cables of larger diameter are used.

4.7 Factors affecting performance of a PV system


a. Shadow free area
Shading of a module can dramatically reduce the output from the whole array. Shading
should therefore always be avoided, especially from any trees or buildings to the South
of the array. PV modules are very sensitive to shading. Shading obstructions can be
defined as soft or hard sources. If a tree branch, roof vent, chimney or other item is
shading from a distance, the shadow is diffuse or dispersed. These soft sources
significantly reduce the amount of light reaching the cell(s) of a module. Hard sources
are defined as those that stop light from reaching the cell(s), such as a blanket, tree
branch, bird dropping, or the like, sitting directly on top of the glass. If even one full cell
is hard shaded the voltage of that module will drop to half of its unshaded value in order
to protect itself. If enough cells are hard shaded, the module will not convert any energy
and will, in fact, become a tiny drain of energy on the entire system. Shadow free area
implies the area which is completely available for sunshine throughout the day. Panels
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should be fitted in a shadow free area such that sunlight falls on the panel all day long.
Preferably the roof should be a RCC permanent structure with strength of more than 150
Kg/m2. Approximately 1Kilo watt system requires a shadow free area of nearly 15 m2
i.e., 150 Square Feet.
b. Orientation
Orientation of panels/array depends on your latitude and where the house or
establishment is. If it's in the northern hemisphere, it faces south, with a tilt direction at
the sun with respect to the average tilt of the earth. To capture the maximum amount of
solar radiation over a year, the solar array should be tilted at an angle approximately
equal to a site's latitude, and facing within 15 of due south. To optimize winter
performance, the solar array can be tilted 15 more than the latitude angle, and to
optimize summer performance, 15 less than the latitude angle. At any given instant, the
array will output maximum available power when pointed directly at the sun. To get the
most from solar panels, it has to be pointed in the direction that captures the most sun.
Solar panels should always face south, since India is located in the northern hemisphere.

Fig 4.6 Suns path during summer and winter


When installing photovoltaic modules, it is important to keep in mind that they generate
maximum power when facing the sun directly. The fixed position which approximates
this ideally over the course of the year, thus maximizing annual energy production at the
angle listed in the table in the next column.

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Table 4.5: Tilt angle as per geographic latitude

c. Obstacle handling
Panels location should be such that it is away from the shadow zone of the obstacle
(three times the height if obstacle is in east and the one time height of obstacle if
obstacle is in south) from the panel level.
d. Temperature
In a solar cell, the parameter most affected by an increase in temperature is the open
circuit voltage. The impact of increasing temperature is shown in the figure below.

Fig4.7 The effect of temperature on the IV characteristics of a solar cell.


Thus, Module output power reduces as module temperature increases. When operating
on a roof, a solar module will heat up substantially, reaching inner temperatures of 50-75
oC. For crystalline modules, a typical temperature reduction factor is around 89% or
0.89. So the 100-watt module will typically operate at about 85 Watts (100 Watts x
0.89 = 89 Watts) in the middle of a spring or fall day, under full sunlight conditions.
e. Dirt and dust
Dirt and dust can accumulate on the solar module surface, blocking some of the sunlight
and reducing output. Although typical dirt and dust is cleaned off during every rainy
season, it is more realistic to estimate system output taking into account the reduction
due to dust build up in the dry season.

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Fig 4.8 Solar panels with dirt and dust settled on it


A typical annual dust reduction factor to use is 93% or 0.93. So the 100watt module,
operating with some accumulated dust may operate on average at about 93 Watts (100
Watts x 0.93 = 93 Watts).

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5.INSTALLATION AND COMMISSIONING

Installation is the process of setting up the solar modules on different mounting


structures and connecting them to the battery and PCU for production of electricity.
System commissioning is the process of checking and testing the installation and putting
it into service.

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88

The above flowchart 5.1 gives an overview of the entire process of installation of solar
panels to be borne in mind by the user for a well implemented installation.

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5. INSTALLATION
Before the commencement of the installation it is important to get familiarized with the
manufacturers instructions supplied with each of the components. The site visit will
allow identification of mounting positions for each item. It is helpful to draw a wiring
diagram before starting the installation. The installation has no correct order for of the
various system components, except for the eventual connection and commissioning.
5.1 Safety

At all times during the installation, the safety of the installers and public must be
paramount. The public should be kept away from the installation site at all times, by the
use of barriers or fencing where necessary. Particular attention should be paid to the
safety of children.

5.1.1 Electrical
Although Solar power systems are generally low voltage, but the wiring regulations for
the country of installation should always be observed. The following should be kept in
mind:
Inverter output is mains voltage AC and can be lethal. It should be treated as any
other mains supply.
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Solar arrays generate electricity when exposed to the sun, whether connected to
control equipment or not. The solar array output cables should be treated as live
and solar array should be covered when connections are being made.
The open circuit voltage of a solar array is significantly greater than the system
voltage. For example a 48 Volt array can have an open circuit voltage of nearly 90
Volts, can be lethal to children, the elderly or anyone with a heart condition.
Batteries can produce currents of hundreds or even thousands of amps giving rise
to the risk of fire. Great care should be taken to protect the battery terminals from
shorting by tools and all jewellery should be removed. If in any doubt about your
abilities, or if required by local regulations, then a qualified electrician must be
employed.

5.1.2 Chemical
Lead acid batteries contain dilute sulphuric acid and liberate hydrogen when charging.
The following precautions should be observed:
1. Great care should be taken when filling batteries with electrolyte; suitable protective
clothing should be worn including eye protection and it should be carried out in a well
ventilated area, preferably outdoors.
2. Great care should be taken to prevent arcing near battery terminals as explosion may
result.
5.1.3 Handling
Batteries and solar arrays present certain hazards in handling as follows:
1. Lead acid batteries are extremely heavy. Appropriate lifting gear should be used.
2. Most solar panels are made from glass and should be treated as fragile.
3. Installation of solar arrays may involve working at height .All necessary precautions
must be observed and the services of a qualified rigger or roofer should be employed if
necessary.

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FOR SAFE INSTALLATION WORK

CAUTION
i. One should never step or sit on the glass surface of a solar module. The glass may
break, resulting in shock or bodily injury. The module may also stop generating power.
ii. The supplied parts should always be used to attach the solar modules and mounts. Use
of weaker parts, such as screws that are too short, is dangerous and may cause the solar
modules or mounts to fall.
iii. The specified tools should only be used. The solar modules or mounts may fall if the
installation is not strong enough, for example when parts are not tightened sufficiently.
iv. Regardless of whether one is working on a new or existing roof, the sheathing should
never be allowed to become wet. The sheathing should be protected from rain during the
installation. Failure to do so may cause leaks.
v. Only the specified materials should be used. Use of other materials is dangerous.
Materials other than specified can reduce performance and can cause leaks, shock, and
so on.
vi. Parts should not be cut or modified.
vii. Protective earth grounding of the individual photovoltaic modules should be
achieved by securing the modules to the mounting frames. The assembly instructions
should be closely followed, in order to ensure a reliable ground connection.
Artificially concentrated sunlight shall not be directed on the module.
Wiring methods should be in accordance with the NEC.
Wires and cables should be installed with appropriate hardware in accordance
with applicable electrical codes.
The framing system shall be grounded in accordance with NEC.
All of the Rails in an installation shall be provided with protective earth bonding
wires when installed.
Systems should not be located near coastal locations or other saltwater locations.
Minimum distance is 0.3 miles from the body of water.
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Systems should also not be located in a corrosion prone area.


Holes should not be drilled in the frame.
Work should be done under dry conditions with dry tools.
Installation should not be near flammable gases.
Solar module should be completely covered with opaque materials when wiring to
halt production of electricity.
The backside of solar module surfaces should be kept free of foreign objects.
Chemicals should not be used on solar modules when cleaning.
Cable electrical contacts should not be touched.
Solar modules should not be exposed to sunlight that is concentrated with mirrors,
lenses, or similar means.
Local codes should be consulted and other applicable laws and statutes
concerning required permits and regulations concerning installation and
inspection requirements. Solar modules should be installed according to
applicable codes.
Shadowing of cells should be avoided in order to prevent solar module hot spots
and/or reduction in power.

PV MODULES

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Points to check before wiring.


1. The solar modules generate electricity when exposed to light, thus insulating gloves
should be worn..
2. A multi-meter for volts, amps, resistance, and continuity capable of measuring DC
and AC up to 600V and 40A is needed.
3. All tools being used should be insulated.
Wiring work should be performed according to the provisions of the National Electrical
Code. The grounding work and wiring connections to the inverter should be performed
by a qualified electrician.
WARNING
Adhere to all NEC. The solar array generates electricity whenever it is exposed to
sunlight. One should be careful when handling it as there is a danger of shock.
WARNING
Wiring the solar modules.
i. During the installation of the modules on the mount, an output cable should never be
allowed to become caught between the mount and a module frame.
ii. The solar modules generate electricity when exposed to sunlight; care should be taken
to not short circuit the output cables. The cables can become overheated and their cable
sheaths can melt.
iii. It should be ensured the module connectors are fully inserted. There is a risk of
malfunction if they are not pushed in all the way.
iv. The output cables should be supported so that there is no slack. High winds can blow
slack cable against the mount, damaging the cables.
Wiring from solar arrays to the inverter (connector box).
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i. The provisions of the National Electrical Code should be adhered to.


ii. For wiring through walls, the cables should be protected with metal conduits, flexible
metal conduits, or other protection. Failure to do so can result in shock and short
circuits. Conduit should always be used to protect sections of array output cables that are
exposed to sunlight. For outdoor wiring, Cables should be protected with PVC conduits,
metal conduits or flexible conduits.
iii. Water should be prevented from entering or building up in conduit by using
waterproof or duct seal.
iv. To prevent shock, the cut ends of array output extension cables should be taped and
labeled (the side opposite to the connector side) before connecting to solar module
output cables. Further, they should be taped again after measurement of the voltage of
each array.
v. To prevent shock when the array output cables are being connected to the inverter,
tape should be removed from one cable at a time as the cables are being connected.
Measuring array output voltage
i. It should be ensured that all solar modules are exposed to direct sunlight. (Lightproof
sheets should be removed, if present.)
ii. The volt meter measurement range should be set to a DC voltage, greater than the
expected measurement (for example 600 VDC).
iii. The plus (+) solar array output cables should be kept away from the ends of the
minus (-) cables. Dangerous arcs can occur. (The array output voltage under normal
conditions <clear skies> can be very high.)
Grounding the mount
To prevent shock, a ground wire should always be connected from the mounting
hardware to earth.
POINTS TO CHECK WHEN SELECTING THE INSTALLATION LOCATION
The following should be checked before starting installation work.
a) Condition of the house where solar power system is to be installed
Inspection of roof structure
It is important to inspect the structural integrity of the roof and the durability of the roof
materials. The mounting structure and solar modules require a strong base for durable
and reliable operation in local environments. A safety harness should always be worn
when working on the roof. Inspection of the roof surface in the area of the installation
should be carried out for cracks, water leakage, and roofing material quality and
uniformity. This is especially important if the roof is older than10 years. The roof should
also be inspected for sags and other abnormalities. A sag or deep depression in the roof
may indicate a structural weakness in the support system that may require correction.

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Fig5.1 Examples of poor roof condition.


Inspection of the roof support system All rafters, trusses and other materials should be in
good condition. Inspection should be carried out for indication of previous water leaks.
The spacing of the rafters or trusses should be measured to confirm the dimensions and
the system layout should be prepared. The location of the electrical roof penetration and
wire run should be determined, if wiring is planned for this area.

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97

SOLAR POWER SYSTEM INSTALLATION LOCATION

1. Solar modules should be installed facing south, if possible. Installations facing east
and west are also possible, although the amount of power generated will be lower. The
roof should be checked from a southern orientation, and checked for obstacles that will
cast a shadow. Since these factors lower the amount of power generated.
2. Installation should be done in a location that has good sun exposure throughout the
year. Less power is generated in shaded locations.

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3. Installation is not possible in regions where the wind pressure exceeds 45 PSF. It
should be checked with the local building department to determine if this mounting
system is in compliance. Installation is not possible when the roof angle is less than 10
degrees or greater than 45 degrees.
4. The output of a series string of solar modules is connected to the input of the inverter.
Solar modules should always be installed so that all elements of the array receive the
same amount of sunlight. The amount of power generated declines dramatically if the
solar modules are connected receiving different amounts of light in a string array, for
example, solar modules facing east and solar modules facing south should not be
connected in the same string.
5. It may not be possible to install solar modules in the following areas and under the
said conditions. Regions with heavy snowfall - Installation is not possible in regions
where snow accumulate
6. Ion exceeds the maximum allowable load. The building department should be
contacted for more information about maximum snow accumulation.
Configuration
A typical Solar Photo Voltaic Power Plant comprises PV Array, Solar deep cycle battery
and Power Conditioning Unit (PCU). PCU comprises a charge controller, an inverter for
conversion from DC into AC and a complete set of installation hardware.

Fig
5.2 A schematic diagram of the proposed system.
The modules have been fixed on corrosion resistant MS Structure. The SPV module has
crystalline silicon solar cells connected in series and hermetically sealed with high
transmission toughened glass on top and suitable lamination material on back using
state-of-the-art technology. The laminates are framed using anodised aluminium
Channels. A terminal block is fixed on the frames for taking the electrical output. The
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SPV Array is grouted on Galvanized MS Support Structure. Each Structure carries a


certain number of modules. Each module contains a bypass diode of suitable rating to
prevent the partial shadow effect. The Modules on each structure are electrically
connected in n Series and m parallel combinations. The outputs from individual n
Series are brought to Panel Junction Box (PJB) mounted on structure. Outputs from the
structures are connected in PJB for paralleling by using fuses and blocking diode of
suitable rating.
The outputs of m nos of PJBs are divided into sub arrays. The outputs from individual
PJB of a sub array are paralleled in respective Field Junction Box (FJB).
5.2.4 Mounting
Permanent solar panel installations require installing mounts for the solar panels. These
can be stand-alone mounts that allow you to mount the panel in open space or roof
mounts that allow the panels to be held stable on the roof of your house. Each has
specific advantages and disadvantages. If mounting on a stand-alone frame, you will
have easier access to the panels, allowing easier maintenance and manual adjustment of
the panels. Mounting the panels on the roof keeps the system elevated and integrates the
solar panels into the existing installation, making them unobtrusive. In both cases, the
consumer can buy mounts from a green energy company, hire a contractor to install a
system or build the system on her own.

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101

Once it is ascertained that the solar array is correctly assembled it is time to lift it into
place and secure it. Usually there are a number of rails to be mounted to the roof or
foundations first. It should be ensured that these are orientated correctly so that the solar
array will point towards the equator once mounted; that is towards the south in the
northern hemisphere and towards the north in the southern hemisphere.
Often the best method is to place two ladders parallel to each other and walk up them
with the solar array in between. The solar array should be carefully lifted into position
on the mounting rails and assembled using the correct nuts and bolts. If the mounting
structure is adjustable for tilt, now is the time to set it. The solar array should be
supported whilst making any adjustments and set the tilt based on the latitude of the
location as follows:
Optimized for winter, e.g. lighting systems in temperate zones: Angle of latitude
+15 from the horizontal.
Optimized for summer, e.g. holiday homes: Angle of latitude -15 from the
horizontal.
All year round performance, e.g. medical systems in the tropics: Angle from the
horizontal equal to angle of latitude.
The tilt should not be set less than 10 from the horizontal whatever the latitude, as a tilt
of less than this will allow dirt to build up on the solar array which will reduce its
performance.

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5.2.1 Assembly
Before fixing to the roof or ground the solar panels must be mounted to the support rails
to create a single unit. In larger systems the solar array may be split into sub-arrays.
Each of these is treated as a separate solar array. If a proprietary support structure is used
then the correct nuts and bolts will be supplied. Otherwise use high-tensile nuts and
bolts the correct size for the mounting holes in the solar panels, and ensure that either
locking washers or self-locking nuts are used to prevent loosening as a result of
vibration due to the wind.
The solar panels should be laid face down in the correct alignment. It should be ensured
that the ground is flat; a grassed area is ideal. A blanket should be placed or similar on
the ground to avoid any damage to the glass. The mounting rails should be bolted to the
solar panels, taking care to ensure that no strain is placed upon the solar panels. Weight
should not be put on the solar panels themselves.
5.2.2 Connection
It is usually easiest to connect the individual solar panels together and connect the long
output cable to them before putting them into position, especially if they are to be roof
mounted. Connect all the solar panels together first; either in one, two, or four groups
depending on the system voltage and then connect the output cable. Check that all
connections are sound before replacing the terminal box covers as this is hopefully the
last time you will see them.
A solar module structure is of two types:
a) Stand-alone
b) Grid tied
The structure has 8 parts, two horizontal, two vertical and four legs.
There are two kinds of nuts used for the structure build up.
The nuts are of M6 and M16 type.
M6 is used for module mounting
M16 is used for mounting structures and is Stainless Steel hardware.
The vertical legs are classified as small and long. A difference is maintained in their
heights to get desired inclination of the mounting structure.

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M16 type of Nut used for mounting structure Entire structure used for mounting. These
individual parts are assembled with the help of nuts.

104

M6 type of nut used for mounting the module on the structure.

Pliers and spanners are used for fixing and tightening the nuts. Spanners used for this
purpose are of 10-11 and 18-19 dimensions.

Vertical legs of the mounting structure.

Fixing of nuts (M16) for fixing the structure. Tightening of nuts using spanner (18-19
dimension).

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The second vertical leg is fixed. Placement of vertical and horizontal sections for
modules to rest on.

The vertical legs should now be fixed and bolts should be tightened.

The above structure is inverted. All the bolts of the entire assembly structure should be
properly tightened.

This is how the structure should look, with the long legs placed on one side and the short
ones on the other side to provide an inclination for the placement of solar modules at a
particular angle for maximized output.

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Pedestals are Reinforced Cement Concrete structures and should be built on the
ground/roof where the structure has to be mounted. This is an important step for
providing a firm base to the modules.

Grouting of the Galvanized MS Structures.

The module is placed on the structure and fixed using M6 bolts.

107

The solar modules are now mounted on the structure one by one.

Spanner (10-11) is used for tightening the bolts.

Open the junction box of the module and connect the module cable with correct polarity.

Positive and negative wire connections made behind a solar panel.

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Close the junction box and tie the module cable on the module frame.

To connect the modules in series, the positive of one module is connected to the negative
of the adjacent module and so on.

The first and the last module are left with two free ends of +ve & - ve outputs which are
then connected to the charge converter.

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Wiring between sub-arrays

Wires are put in casing.

ARRAY JUNCTION BOX


(This is how the output cables of arrays are junctioned). For instance in this case the
number of panels is 7.

Main junction boxes for paralleling of the junction boxes.


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RFID is pasted behind every solar module. This signifies the characteristics of every
panel like the current, voltage etc.

For installing the home controller, first open the product.

Separate PCB fixed Base plate and Top cover.

Fix the base plate to the wall. For fixing the product in wall marks & makes 4 hole of
drill size 6.5mm

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On the base plate, where the PCB is mounted, labels for connections are marked.
Connections are to be done according to the labels. Before the terminal fixing, grommets
are to be inserted to the cables.

Place the Top cover on the base plate and fix with screws and put the screw caps
supplied along with.

5.3 Battery
Installation of the battery may be as simple as taking a wet-charged or sealed battery out
of a box and placing it on a firm and level surface. Alternatively it may involve mixing
acid to the right concentration and filling the batteries on site.

Fig : picture of EXIDE solar battery

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5.3.1 Site
The batteries need to be mounted such that they are secure, i.e. they cant fall over, they
are protected from unauthorized access and away from sources of ignition. The room or
container that they are in should be ventilated so as to allow the hydrogen produced by
charging to escape. This applies even to sealed batteries as they are able to vent excess
gasses should the charging system malfunction.
Practically this is most likely to mean one of two things:
On a solid floor or racking within a locked and well ventilated room.
In a purpose designed battery box.
It is important that it is possible to gain access to the batteries in order to perform
maintenance. In the case of a sealed battery this means the terminals, but for a vented
battery it may mean access to the level markings on the side and the filling caps.
Connection

113

Fig 5.4 Schematics showing electrical connections

114

Once the battery has been put in place, the individual batteries or cells can be connected
together to form a single battery. If possible battery interconnect cables supplied by the
battery manufacturer or supplier should be used; and if it has to be made then the
thickest cable that is practical should be used. Great care should be taken when
connecting the batteries. All metal jewellery should be removed before starting.
Insulated tools should be used where available. Output cables should not be connected at
this point.

5.3.4 Earthing
Provision should be made to earth the battery negative terminal. If no suitable earth is
available, then an earth rod must be driven into the ground outside as near as possible to
the battery. This is connected to the battery negative terminal via green and yellow earth
cable of at least 2.5 mm2 and preferably 6 mm2 cross sectional areas.
a. Control equipment
POWER CONDITIONING UNIT

The single phase Power conditioning unit (PCU) provides single phase AC power to the
specific loads with an objective to reduce the dependency on conventional power as well
as to minimize the consumption of fossil fuel (e.g. Diesel) in the event of power failures.
The power conditioning unit mainly comprises of MPPT based, PWM solar charge
controller, and a single phase bi-directional inverter. The MPPT charger is
microprocessor based system IS designed to provide the necessary DC/AC conversion to
maximize the power from the SPV array to charge the battery bank. The charge
controller is equipped with necessary software that allows precise charging of the battery
bank .Many protection features are also included to ensure that no abnormal or out of
range charge conditions are encountered by the battery bank. The system incorporates a
front panel display to indicate the operational status and fault status of the system,
reset system faults and implement various operating modes. The high efficiency inverter
converts the DC power available from the Array/Battery into single phase AC, by
incorporating IGBT devices for power conversion. When AC mains is available, the
inverter control system uses the internal set point to monitor the condition of the AC
source to determine if the quality of AC mains is suitable for being to the load. If the AC
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quality is found to be within specified limits, it is connected to the load. In the event of
power failure and the solar power is available ,the control attempts to maintain zero
current from the battery, thus transferring as much as possible solar current to the load.
During this time the battery voltage is monitored continuously. When the solar energy is
not available (due to insufficient sunlight) the system enables the battery to deliver the
current through inverter to meet the demand. The microprocessor controlled inverter
incorporates Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) technology and incorporates all the
desired safety features (please refer data sheet).
Important features/protections in the PCU:
MPPT included.
LCD keypad operator interface menu driven.
Automatic fault conditions reset for all parameters like voltage, frequency and/or
black out.
MOV type surge arrestors on AC & DC terminals for over voltage protection from
lightening induced surges.
PCU operation from 5C to 55 C
All parameters shall be accessible through an industry standard communication
link.
Over load capacity (for 30 sec) shall be 150% of continuous rating.
Since the PCU is to be used in solar photovoltaic energy system, it shall have high
operational efficiency. The idling current at no load shall not exceed two percent of the
full load current. In PCU, there shall be a direct current isolation provided at the output
by means of a suitable isolating transformer. Internal faults: Inbuilt protection for
internal faults including excess temperature, commutation failure, and overload and
cooling fan failure (if fitted) is obligatory. Galvanic Isolation: Galvanic isolation is
required to avoid any DC component being injected into the grid and the potential for
AC components appearing at the array. Over voltage protection: Over voltage against
atmospheric lightening discharge to the PV array is provided.
A. Earth Fault Supervision: An integrated earth fault shall be provided to detect eventual
earth fault on DC side and shall send message to the supervisory system.
B. Cabling Practice: Cable connections shall be made using PVC Cu cables, as per BIS
standards. All cable connections shall be made using suitable terminations for effective
contact.
All doors, covers, panels, and cable exits shall be jacketed or otherwise designed to limit
the entry of dust and moisture. In the design and fabrication of the PCU the site
temperature 5 C to 50 C, incident sunlight and the effect of ambient temperature on
component life have been considered carefully. Similar consideration has been given to
the heat sinking and thermal for blocking diodes and similar components.
INVERTER CONNECTIONS:
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Fig 5.5 : Inverter for 1MegaWatt power station


The controller, inverter and any other control and monitoring equipment can now be
installed.
There are four components to be connected together:
solar panels,
charge controller,
batteries and
inverter
The charge controller is needed to make sure that the batteries are not overloaded.
The inverter is needed to convert Direct Current (DC) to Alternating Current
(AC). Most home appliances run on AC and the output from solar panels and
batteries are DC

i. Connecting two panels (or similar groups of panels) in series will double the voltage,
but keeps the current the same. Wiring two panels (or similar groups of panels) in
parallel keeps the voltage the same but doubles the current. Figure out the voltages for
the panels and batteries so that they match before buying anything. Also make sure that
the ratings for the charge controller and the inverter match the voltages for the panel
array and the battery bank before buying anything.

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ii. Connecting two batteries (or similar banks of batteries) in series (the positive terminal
of one to the negative terminal of the other) will double the voltage while keeping the
current the same. Connecting two batteries (or similar banks of batteries) in parallel
(both positive terminals connected together and both negative terminals connected
together) will keep the voltage the same while doubling the current.
iii. It is important that the voltage ratings to all four major components (solar panels,
current controller, batteries and inverter) match. The panels and batteries can be wired in
combinations that bring the total networks up to the required voltages--the networks
need not be mirror images of each other as long as the totals match.
5.4.2 Wiring
The wiring may now be put in place, following the diagram and cable sizes. Great care
should be taken to observe the correct polarity, and ensure that all connections are well
tightened. The cables should be securely clipped to the wall where it is possible to keep
them out of harm and make them look neat. Any of the final positive connections to
battery, solar array or load should not be made at this stage. All wiring must be installed
in conformity with local electrical regulations, by a qualified electrician where
necessary.
5.5 System Commissioning
System commissioning is the process of checking and testing the installation and putting
it into service. It may be tempting to hurry this procedure; time may be running short
and the user may be impatient to see the system working. However, the future reliability
of the entire system depends on careful commissioning. If the equipment you are using
has any specific commissioning instructions then follow those in preference to the
instructions below.
5.5.1 Visual check
With the help of the wiring diagram the system should be carefully examined to ensure
that everything is as it should be. Particular attention should be paid to the polarity of
connections and the battery earth.
5.5.2 Connections
The security of all the connections to the control gear and any other connections that
have been made already, such as the battery negative and earth connections should be
checked.

5.2.3 Testing output of solar panel


To Test the Power Output of a Solar Panel with a Multimeter, the instructions are given
below:
Instructions

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* It is wise to turn the panel away from the sun to measure the current as the panel is live
when the sun is shining on its face. Connecting to the live junctions when testing the
current can cause sparking.
** It's not unheard of to get a slightly higher reading than the current rating listed on the
panel, so you want to see at least a matching number. If both the voltage and amperage
test properly, then its a good panel and will serve well.

5.5.3 Applying power


With any load isolators or circuit breakers switched off, the loads to the controller
and / or inverter should be connected.
Next, the battery terminal voltage should be recorded and measured and the
battery positive terminal should be connected. The battery fuse should be inserted,
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if fitted. Since a spark is likely to occur, ensure that the room is well ventilated
and the battery caps should be blown across first to clear any hydrogen if the
battery is of the vented type.
Beware of newer glass panels that have cracks or condensation under the glass.
The conductivity is likely compromised, meaning you can probably leave your
multimeter in your pocket.

Tips & Warnings


The voltage at the battery connections of the controller and inverter should
be measured. This should be the same as the battery terminal voltage. If not,
all the connections and the battery fuse should be checked.
Finally, the photovoltaic array should be connected. Before doing this,
cover it with an opaque material if possible; and it should be removed as
soon as the connection is secure. The voltage at the input terminals of the
controller should be measured this should be the same as or slightly
higher than the battery terminal voltage.
If there is a reasonable amount of daylight then the controller should show
that the battery is charging. It should be checked that the battery is actually
charging by measuring the terminal voltage, which should be higher than
that initially recorded and rising.
Now the loads should be switched on. All the loads should be checked, if
there is more than one, to make sure that they work.
The commissioning process is now complete.
RECOMMISSIONING
Repeating the commissioning of a system that was previously commissioned is called
re-commissioning. Usually, re-commissioning should be the last step in any substantial
maintenance project, such as after replacing major components, especially inverters;
after adding additional modules; after a nonself-clearing alarm is diagnosed and
repaired, such as a ground fault; and as part of a system checkup or regular annual
maintenance visit. In addition, if the original commissioning was performed during less
than optimal seasonal conditions, like shading or extended poor weather, a recommissioning event may be called for during better conditions or in the summer. Recommissioning results should be closely compared to those from the original
commissioning. if the results are inconsistent (after accounting for shading or other
changes), the system integrator should track down the source of the inconsistencies. Recommissioning performance results should also be compared to updated expected
performance numbers and discrepancies addressed.

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6 APPLICATION AREAS
6.1 HABITAT APPLICATIONS

6.1.1 Solar Lanterns


CEL SOLAR LANTERN is a versatile and reliable source of lighting. It comprises a
Lantern, Solar Photovoltaic (SPV) module and a connecting cable. The SPV module
when exposed to sunlight charges the battery in the lantern. This stored energy in the
battery is used to operate the lamp when required. Solar Lantern consists of a 7W CFL
(light output equivalent to a 40W incandescent lamp) which can be used for 3-4 hours
daily. The system comprises SPV Panel, lantern (with maintenance free lead acid
battery) and a detachable connecting cord.
Soar PV Module A number of high grade crystalline Silicon Solar Cells, interconnected
in a series combination and hermetically sealed with a toughened and highly transparent
front glass cover, from the SPV Module. CEL's Solar Lantern is the final and latest
answer to many lighting problems.

Salient Features

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6.1.2 Domestic habitat light & fan system

CEL's Domestic Lighting Systems provides uninterrupted light and is completely


noiseless, smoke-free, and free from fire hazards. The independent lighting system
consisting of Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) fixtures, a storage battery powered by
the SPV Module provides 3 to 4 hours of light per day.

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CEL's Solar Domestic Lighting Systems are easy to install and requires minimal
maintenance. CEL can supply Customized System also.

6.1.3 Outdoor & street lighting system

CEL's Solar Street Lighting System provides Bright Light during night. The system
completely Noiseless, Smoke-free and Free from Fire Hazards. This is a stand-alone
lighting system consisting of Lamp Assembly (with control electronics) with one
Compact Florescent Lamp (CFL) of 11 Watt, a Storage Battery charged by the SPV
Modules and provides lighting during night hours. It works automatically from Dusk to
Dawn.

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CEL's Solar Street Lighting Systems are easy to install and requires minimal
maintenance. CEL can supply Solar Street Lighting System with SPX Lamp or as per
choice of customer.

6.1.4 Water pumping system

CEL's Solar Photovoltaic Water pumping system is modular, flexible and is available in
two types i.e. Shallow well type and Deep well type. They are ideally suitable for those
areas where conventional grid supply is either erratic or nonexistent. CEL's Solar Water
Pumping System requires minimal maintenance. These systems don't require batteries.
DC power generated by Solar Modules is directly fed to the pump.

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Water Output
The system would deliver 1,30,000 liters per day at 10m total dynamic head on a clear
sunny day with three times tracking of SPV panel when solar radiation on horizontal
surface is : 5.5 KWH/sq.m/ day.

Water Output:
The system would deliver 30,000 litres per day at 30m total head and 12,000 litres per
day at 70m total head on a clear sunny day with three times tracking of SPV panel when
solar radiation on horizontal surface is: 5.5 KWH/sq.m/ day.

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Water Output:
The system would deliver 42,000 liters per day at 30m total head and 19,000 litres per
day at 70m total head on a clear sunny day with three times tracking of SPV panel when
solar radiation on horizontal surface is: 5.5 KWH/sq.m/ day.

6.2 INDUSTRIAL APPLICATIONS


6.2.1 ONGC offshore power

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Offshore platforms that pump oil and gas under the sea are unmanned and need to be
remotely monitored. It becomes vital then, for the power system to be highly reliable,
long lasting, well-engineered and capable of operating in a vast spread of conditions.
The ONGC module is a pioneering intrinsically safe double glass module developed
specifically for operation in explosion prone environments, such as on the offshore, oil
production platforms of ONGC. These are the 1st modules in the world to be certified
with Gr.I, Gr.IIA and Gr.IIB by Central Mining Research Station (CMRS), Dhanbad and
accepter by international insurers, Lloyds of U.K.
The solar power generation system used on the ONGC wellhead offshore platforms
powers telemetry, gas detection, lighting and navigational aid systems.
The system comprises of

6.2.2 Very Low Power TV Transmitter & Radio Receiver

6.2.3 Obstruction Warning Lights at Airports

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The obstruction light is a system of red lights used to show the presence of manmade or
natural objects that are dangerous to airway path. These obstruction lights are now days
made from LED, Xenon Lamps, Neon Lamps, Incandescent lamps etc. Obstruction
lights shall be located as close as practicable to the top of the object. Obstruction lights
are installed on all obstructions that present a threat to air traffic, cautioning pilots of the
presence of an obstruction during hours of darkness and during periods of limited
daytime visibility. The use of solar energy to illuminate the Obstruction Lights during
day time will be more economical and viable also environment friendly and save
electricity.
6.2.4 Railway signalling (Supplementary Power)

The efficient running and control of railway traffic, one of the largest means of
transportation in the country is seriously hampered by irregular grid supply, often
resulting in traffic congestion and great inconvenience to public and adversely affecting
the operating cost. The alternative method of supplementing grid supply by the use of
Diesel Generator sets pose considerable logistic problems. It has a high maintenance
cost, necessitating use of additional DG Sets as stand-by. Diesel oil has to be transported
to the far-flung location at prohibitive cost. Diesel oil is further prone to pilferage. Thus
this alternative becomes extremely costly, apart from disadvantage of atmospheric
pollution. As a result of decade of research and field experience CEL now brings the
source of power Solar PV power source by harnessing the Solar Energy abundantly
available and non-polluting by nature. CEL SPV power system comprising of the Solar
Photovoltaic arrays, storage batteries and control electronics now offers the best
alternative power source for panel station of Indian Railways.
A typical SPV power source for Panel Stations for Railways consists of:
A Solar Photovoltaic Array.
A Battery Bank.
An Electronic Control Unit and Panel.
6.2.5 Telecom towers
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As many as 400 telecom towers are to be powered by solar panels that will sit on them,
reflecting light from the sun to produce electricity that will be used by the towers. The
towers are part of a Rs 120 crore project under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar
Mission (JNNSM) of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. The 400 projects
include 100 each for telecom operators Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL, New Delhi,
India), Bharti Airtel Ltd. (New Delhi, India), Indus and GTL Ltd. (Navi Mumbai, India).
The towers are located in multiple Indian states, with GTL's 100 tower PV projects in
Uttar Pradesh, Indus' 100 systems in Andra Pradesh, and Airtel's 100 systems in Bihar.
Multiple economic analyses have indicated that PV systems are far more costeffective
over time for supporting telecom applications in off-grid areas than diesel generation,
even before the inherent uncertainty in fuel costs is factored in. Thus CEL being one of
the largest manufacturers of solar cells in India, telecom towers will be considered as
one of the markets for using solar PV as an industrial application.

6.3 DEFENCE USE

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6.3.1 Lightweight foldable solar charger for Manpack Radio Equipment


CEL's Lightweight, Foldable Solar Charger is suitable for charging 12 V, 18 V and 24 V
Lead Acid and Nickel Cadmium batteries for Manpack Radio Equipment. This solar
charger is specially designed to meet Joint Service Specifications 55555 and is ideal for
charging batteries at difficult and inaccessible areas a temperature varying between 30C
to +65C.
The Lightweight Solar Charger has been designed for use by the Army and Paramilitary
Forces for charging re-chargeable lead-acid and nickel-cadmium batteries used in low
power manpack radio sets, The Solar Charger totally eliminates the second set of
batteries and/or heavy manually operated generating set (with fuel) that normally form
part of a manpack radio detachment thereby reducing at least one man-load. It is hence
most suitable for the soldiers operating at high altitudes, remote and inaccessible areas
and for long range patrols.

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The Solar Charger consists of a pair of foldable solar photovoltaic (SPV) panels. Each
panel is of 24 W capacity and capable of charging a 12 V battery. The two panels can be
connected in series or parallel for charging 24V/18V or 12V battery systems as required.
The charger is provided with a support stand for the SPV panel, an Indication Unit
having a current meter and requisite connectors; all capable of being assembled and
packed in a water-proof carrying harness. Indication Unit helps the user to correctly
orient the SPV panel for capture of maximum sun insulation and also know the charging
current.

Features
Lightweight
Foldable & easy to carry
Ideal for remote locations
Easy to assemble & operate
No moving parts & no noise
Maintenance free

These electrical parameters are measured at standard test conditions (ASTHC ) of 100
mW/Sq.cm cell temperature of 25C and Air Mass of 1.5. Weight of Solar charger with
all accessories
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Single panel 4.0 kg.


Two panels 7.5 kg.

Environmental
Specifications subject to change without prior notice due to continuous in-house
improvement. Measurement accuracy within +5%

6.3.2 Lightweight foldable solar charger for Manpack Wireless Communication


Equipment SCU-01

CEL's Lightweight Foldable Solar Charger is suitable for charging 12V Lead Acid and
Nickel Cadmium batteries for Manpack Wireless Communication Equipment. This Solar
Charger is specially designed to meet Joint Service Specifications 55555 as per Table
L.3 and is ideal for charging batteries at difficult and inaccessible areas to temperature
varying between 30Cto + 65C.
Features

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The Lightweight Solar Charger has been designed for use by the Army and Paramilitary Forces for charging rechargeable lead-acid and Nickel- Cadmium
batteries used in low power manpack communication sets.
The Solar Charger totally eliminates the carriage of back-up batteries and/or
heavy manually operated generating set (with fuel) that normally form part of a
manpack radio detachment thereby reducing at least one man-load. It is hence
most suitable for soldiers operating in high altitudes, remote and inaccessible
areas and for long range patrols.
The Solar Charger consists of a pair of modules (each module having 16 single
crystalline solar cells, connected in series) with integral indication unit and a
support stake. The modules are again connected in series to charge a 12 V
battery .Indication Unit helps the user to correctly orient the SPV panel for
capture of maximum sun insulation and also to know the charging current. It
consists of a current meter and pair of terminals for connecting the battery to be
charged.
A Schottky diode has been provided as blocking diode (to avoid reverse flow of
current).
Support Stake has been provided on the back side of the charger to keep the
charger at an angle for getting maximum sun insulation.

Weight of Solar Charger - 2.2 Kg (Max.)

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Environmental

Specifications subject to change without prior notice due to continuous in-house


improvement. The Solar Charger is cleared by Inspection authority (Ministry of
Defence, Govt, of India) for induction in service for radio sets RS-HX (MAT-20M).

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7 MAINTENANCE & TROUBLESHOOTING


Recommended preventive maintenance work It is a recommended that preventive
inspection and maintenance works are carried out every six to twelve months. The PV
modules require routine visual inspection for sign of damage, dirt build up or shade
encroachment. soar PV system fixtures must be checked for corrosion. This is to ensure
that the solar PV system is safely secured. While the inverters functionality can be
remotely verified, only onsite inspection can verify the state of lighting surge arrestors,
cable connections and circuit breakers. The following table shows some
recommendations on the preventive maintenance, works on the component and
equipment and the corresponding remedial actions to be carried out by the qualified
personal.

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