Solar Array Simulation including EN-50530, SANDIA, or Custom Test Profiles
EA Elektro-Automatik’s programmable supplies are rated as low as 1 kW per channel to as high as 2 MW per supply. The maximum output voltage is 2,000 VDC, and there no limit on how many supplies that you can use for this application. In addition, you can program each DC supply independently to simulate different irradiance profiles. For instance, on one inverter input, you can simulate a solar array in full sun, while on another input, you can simulate a solar panel that is partially or completely shaded.
Simply connecting a DC voltage to an inverter does not, however, rigorously test its efficiency. To wring the maximum amount of power from a solar array, MPPT inverters must accurately track the solar array outputs as the amount of sunlight hitting the array changes. To test an inverter’s ability to do this, solar simulation is required, and more often than not, both static and dynamic tests are required.
The PSI Series’ embedded function generator allows you to perform these tests. You can program up to 4096 data points, which allows you to program simple solar array curves based on Isc, Voc, Vmpp and Impp. In essence, you control the sun! If more advanced solar simulation is required, EA Elektro-Automatik’s EA Power Control (EAPC) software allows you to easily set up Sandia, EN50530, or custom test profiles.
An important assessment factor of solar cells is the capabilities, including operational life cycle and outdoor tolerance to expose the module to the normal environment. IEC61215, IEC61646 and UL1703 are test regulations for the characteristics of solar cell modules to ensure the materials can sustain the severe outdoor environment in a long run and to reduce the chances of damage.
Thermal cycling TC200 of UL1703-35 or EC61215/IEC61646 can verify the stability of solar modules under different temperature variations by identifying temperature variations caused malfunctions such as reducing output power; open circuit or insulation problem.