MPPT or Maximum Power Point Tracking is algorithm that included in charge controllers used for extracting maximum available power from PV module under certain conditions. The voltage at which PV module can produce maximum power is called ‘maximum power point’ (or peak power voltage). Maximum power varies with solar radiation, ambient temperature and solar cell temperature.
Typical PV module produces power with maximum power voltage of around 17 V when measured at a cell temperature of 25°C, it can drop to around 15 V on a very hot day and it can also rise to 18 V on a very cold day.
The major principle of MPPT is to extract the maximum available power from PV module by making them operate at the most efficient voltage (maximum power point). That is to say: MPPT checks output of PV module, compares it to battery voltage then fixes what is the best power that PV module can produce to charge the battery and converts it to the best voltage to get maximum current into battery. It can also supply power to a DC load, which is connected directly to the battery.
MPPT is most effective under these conditions:
DC off-grid solar power systems are most often used to power DC appliances in RV’s, boats, and cabins, as well as farm/ranch appliances like cattle gates and rural telecommunications systems when utility power is not accessible DC solar power is less expensive than AC solar power because an inverter is not required to convert the electricity produced by solar panels and stored in batteries from DC to AC. But DC solar power does NOT power standard AC appliances.
A solar inverter, or converter or PV inverter, converts the variable direct current (DC) output of a photovoltaic (PV) solar panel into a utility frequency alternating current (AC) that can be fed into a commercial electrical grid or used by a local, off-grid electrical network. It is a critical balance of system (BOS)–component in a photovoltaic system, allowing the use of ordinary AC-powered equipment. Solar power inverters have special functions adapted for use with photovoltaic arrays, including maximum power point tracking and anti-islanding protection.
An intelligent hybrid inverter or smart grid inverter is a new generation of inverter for dedicated solar applications using renewable energy for home consumption, especially for solar photovoltaic installations.
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The power optimizer is a DC/DC converter which is connected by installers to each PV module or embedded by module manufacturers, replacing the traditional solar junction box. The power optimizers increase energy output from PV systems by constantly tracking the maximum power point (MPPT) of each module individually. Furthermore, the power optimizers monitor the performance of each module and communicate performance data to the monitoring portal for enhanced, cost-effective module-level maintenance. Each power optimizer is equipped with the unique SafeDC™ feature which automatically shuts down modules; DC voltage whenever the inverter or grid power is shut down.