Signal Processing for Solar Array Monitoring, Fault Detection, and Optimization

Signal Processing for Solar Array Monitoring, Fault Detection, and Optimization

Henry Braun, Mahesh Banavar, Andreas Spanias
ISBN: 9781608459483 | PDF ISBN: 9781608459490
Copyright © 2012 | 95 Pages | Publication Date: 01/01/2012

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Although the solar energy industry has experienced rapid growth recently, high-level management of photovoltaic (PV) arrays has remained an open problem. As sensing and monitoring technology continues to improve, there is an opportunity to deploy sensors in PV arrays in order to improve their management. In this book, we examine the potential role of sensing and monitoring technology in a PV context, focusing on the areas of fault detection, topology optimization, and performance evaluation/data visualization. First, several types of commonly occurring PV array faults are considered and detection algorithms are described. Next, the potential for dynamic optimization of an array's topology is discussed, with a focus on mitigation of fault conditions and optimization of power output under non-fault conditions. Finally, monitoring system design considerations such as type and accuracy of measurements, sampling rate, and communication protocols are considered. It is our hope that the benefits of monitoring presented here will be sufficient to offset the small additional cost of a sensing system, and that such systems will become common in the near future.

Table of Contents

Overview of Photovoltaics
Causes Performance Degradation and Outage
Fault Detection Methods
Array Topology Optimization
Monitoring of PV Systems

About the Author(s)

Henry Braun, Arizona State University
Henry Braun completed his B.S. and M.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona, and is continuing as a Ph.D. student. During an internship at the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab working in the computer vision field, he developed a strong interest in information processing and decision making. This interest is reflected in his recent work on automated fault detection in photovoltaic arrays. Other research interest areas include compressive sensing and automatic target recognition and tracking. In addition to NASA, Henry's research sponsors have included Paceco Corp. and Raytheon missile systems.

Mahesh Banavar, Arizona State University
Mahesh K. Banavar is a post-doctoral researcher in the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering at Arizona State University. He received a B.E. degree in Telecommunications Engineering from Visvesvaraya Technological University, Karnataka, India in 2005, and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees, both in Electrical Engineering, from Arizona State University in 2007 and 2010, respectively. His research area is Signal Processing and Communications, with specific interest in Wireless Communications, Sensor Networks, Distributed Inference, Localization, and applications of statistical signal processing. He is a member of MENSA and the Eta Kappa Nu honor society.

Andreas Spanias, Arizona State University
Andreas Spanias is a Professor in the School of Electrical, Computer, and Energy Engineering at Arizona State University.He is also the founder and director of the SenSIP industry consortium. His research interests are in the areas of adaptive signal processing,speech processing,and audio sensing. He and his student team developed the computer simulation software Java-DSP. He is the author of two textbooks: Audio Processing and Coding by Wiley and DSP: An Interactive Approach. He served as Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing and as General Co-chair of IEEE ICASSP-99.He also served as the IEEE Signal Processing Vice-President for Conferences. Andreas Spanias is co-recipient of the 2002 IEEE Donald G.Fink paper prize award and was elected Fellow of the IEEE in 2003. He served as Distinguished lecturer for the IEEE Signal Processing Society in 2004.

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