System Performance and Operations

The System Performance and Operations (SPO) group at PVMC is developing predictive performance algorithms for commercially-deployed PV systems. These predictions are used to benchmark the actual production of PV arrays to identify maintenance “triggers” and establish maintenance protocols.

What are the benefits of working with PVMC?

PVMC SPO programs strive to reduce O&M cost and to improve the ability to predict the performance of PV systems.

PV System Health Reports

PVMC will analyze your system data, provide periodic health reports and make recommendations for O&M actions. This is a continuous improvement process and requires on-site validation. Partners will use this analysis to implement more efficient O&M practices, and improved system designs, thus reducing risk in the ability to deliver long-term contractual performance from the arrays. The impact of these improvements will be clear in each system owner’s financial statement. Better system design translates into higher confidence in predicted power production, leading to lower insurance costs and lower initial cost of ownership. Improved operations and maintenance protocols will change the maintenance model from a reactive model to a predictive model, in turn lowering O&M costs and increasing system owners return on investment (ROI).

PVMC will analyze your system data, provide periodic health reports and make recommendations for O&M actions.

PVMC Data Center

The PVMC Data Center is a repository of PV data generated from many geographically dispersed sites. There is a tremendous value hidden in the large data sets. Partners can work with PVMC and leverage the Data Center to develop or improve DER or data monitoring platforms, or to validate new innovations.

PVMC module and string level testing

Partners are able to leverage indoor and outdoor PVMC facilities to characterize PV modules and BOS components. PVMC is able to determine input coefficients for PAN files, and can also validate partner PAN files.

Partners are able to leverage indoor and outdoor PVMC facilities to characterize PV modules and BOS components.
Partners are able to leverage indoor and outdoor PVMC facilities to characterize PV modules and BOS components. Partners are able to leverage indoor and outdoor PVMC facilities to characterize PV modules and BOS components.

Advanced weather and solar irradiance, DC side monitoring

Errors in PV performance prediction may occur when using off-site or historically averaged weather data, or when spectral influences are not considered. In addition, lack of DC side monitoring becomes an issue. PVMC is working to reduce these errors. PVMC is able to work with partners to benchmark or validate the performance of their systems or products.

Select past SPO project activities:

  • Conducted CIGS PV Single Axis Tracker Array Tests in the Northeast US
  • Developed module performance prediction algorithm of PV modules based on indoor IV flash testing protocol and outdoor testing
  • Compared performance of PV modules subjected to solar thermal humidity cycles with modified and extended IEC protocols
  • Measured the effects of pre-conditioning and testing protocols on performance of different PV technologies
  • Initiated data collection and analysis capabilities for PV system and weather data from PVMC arrays, included PVMC member arrays installed at the Vermont Regional Test Center