Renewable energy sources continue to attract attention in all parts of the world. Photovoltaic solar energy plants rapidly grow and become prevalent. They are now used for large-scale power plants rather than small- ones. The inverter type to be used in large-scale power plants has always been debated in the academic community. The performances of these power plants are affected by inverter types and losses. This study focuses on the impact of inverter capacity on the performance of large-scale photovoltaic power plants. The performance of different inverter types were analyzed via various measurement and simulation methods. The measurement results obtained from 43 active photovoltaic power plants in Gainesville, Florida (29° 39′ 00″, −82° 19′ 14″) and 39 simulation results obtained thanks to Pvsyst (demo) software were used to analyze the impact of inverter capacity on the performance in detail. The findings demonstrate that string inverter produces more energy by 4.09% compared to micro inverter; that central inverter produces more energy by 5.45% compared to micro inverter, and that central inverter, again, produces more energy by 1.3% compared to string inverter. In addition, it was observed that the loss in string inverter is less by 43.93% compared to micro inverter; that the loss in central inverter is less by 60.4% compared to micro inverter; and that the loss in central inverter, again, is less by 29.37% compared to string inverter. Therefore, it can be stated that micro inverters produce less amounts of energy and cause more losses; that string inverters produce medium amounts of energy and causes medium losses; and that central inverters produce the highest amount of energy and causes the least amount of losses. Thus, the use of high capacity inverters contributes positively to the performance of large-scale power plants.
Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews – Elsevier
Published: Nov 1, 2017
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