Solar Inverter

Last Updated : July 13 2017

Solar Inverter

by Bianca Broadstone 2017 July 12

I think we can all agree that solar inverters, or microinverters, are the most crucial parts of any solar power system, right?

For anyone who knows their stuff when it comes to solar power systems, solar inverters are widely considered to be the brains of the project as it serves as the gateway between the photovoltaic (PV) system and the energy off-taker. But what exactly does a solar inverter do and what advantages do they bring to your solar power system? This article will discuss the know-how of a solar inverter.

Topics included

How solar inverters work

Basics of solar power

Before getting into the greens of what a solar inverter is, it's important to understand first what solar power does. It is, of course, the harnessing of solar energy to be transformed into power, e.g. electricity, for consumer consumption, and is widely considered to be the cleanest, most sustainable source of renewable energy. Alongside wind, solar power is the alternative to fossil fuels, which have been found to be a top cause of global warming.


What is a solar inverter?

In essence, an inverter’s basic function is to “invert” the direct current (DC) output into alternating current (AC). The yield from a few solar inverters is joined and frequently nourished to the electrical matrix. Solar inverters stand out from traditional string and focal solar inverters, which are associated with various solar modules or boards of the PV framework.

Solar inverters have a few points of interest over customary inverters. The principle advantage is that little measures of shading, flotsam, and jetsam or snow lines on any one solar module, or even a total module disappointment, don't excessively lessen the yield of the whole cluster. Each microinverter harvests ideal power by performing maximum power point tracking (MPPT) for its associated module. Simplicity in framework configuration, low amperage wires, disentangled stock administration, and built-in security are just some of the elements presented with the inverter arrangement.

Solar boards deliver current at a voltage that depends on the module outline and lighting conditions. Present-day modules that use 6-inch cells often contain 60 cells and provide an ostensible 30 V. For transformation into AC, boards might be associated in arrangement to create a large solitary board with an ostensible rating of 300 to 600 VDC. The power at that point races to an inverter, which changes over it into standard AC voltage, ordinarily 230 VAC/50 Hz or 240 VAC/60 Hz.

Disadvantages of a solar inverter

While solar inverters are indeed considered to be an important part of any solar power system, they do incorporate a higher starting hardware cost per crest watt than the same energy of a focal inverter since every inverter should be introduced nearby a board (typically on a rooftop). This likewise makes them harder to keep up and all the more expensive to expel and supplant (O&M). A few producers have tended to these issues with boards with worked in solar inverters.

Another issue, however minor, is that string inverters are accessible in a restricted choice of energy evaluations. This implies that a surrendered cluster regularly sizes the inverter to the following biggest model over the rating of the board exhibit. For example, a 10-board cluster of 2300W may need to utilize a 2500W or even 3000W inverter, paying for transformation capacity it can't use.

The principle issue with the "string inverter" approach is the series of boards go about as though it were a single bigger board with a maximum current rating equal to the poorest entertainer in the string. For instance, on the off chance that one board in a line has 5% higher resistance because of a minor assembling imperfection, the whole series ensures a 5% execution misfortune.

On the off chance that the client initially obtained a 2500W inverter for their 2300W of boards, they can't include even a solitary board without overdriving the inverter. In any case, this overmeasuring is viewed as normal practice in the present business (now and again as high as 20 percent over inverter nameplate rating) to represent module corruption, higher execution amid winter months or to accomplish higher offer back to the utility.

‘Christmas lights’ impact

This circumstance is dynamic. If a board is shaded its yield drops drastically, influencing the yield of the string, regardless of the possibility that other boards are not shaded. Indeed, even slight changes in the introduction can cause yield misfortune in this mold. In the business, this is known as the "Christmas lights impact," alluding to the way a whole series of arrangement hung Christmas tree lights will fizzle if one globule fails.

However, this impact is not by any stretch precise and disregards the unpredictable connection between present-day string inverter greatest power point following and even module sidestep diodes. Shade thinks about by major micro inverter, and DC enhancer organizations indicate little yearly picks up in light, medium and substantial shaded conditions -2 percent, 5 percent and 8 percent separately finished a more seasoned string inverter.

Greatest power direct

Moreover, the productivity of a board's yield is unequivocally influenced by the heap the inverter puts on it. To boost generation, inverters utilize a method called “greatest power direct” by altering the connected load. In any case, similar issues that make yield change from board to board, influence the best possible amount that the MPPT framework ought to apply.

If a single board works at an alternate point, a string inverter can just observe the general change and moves the MPPT point to coordinate. This outcome in not only misfortunes from the shadowed board, but rather other boards as well. Shading of as meager as 9% of the surface of a cluster can, in a few conditions, diminish broad framework power as much as 54%. However, as expressed over, these yearly yield misfortunes are little, and more up to date innovations enable some string inverters to fundamentally lessen the impacts of partial shading.

Different difficulties related with unified inverters incorporate the space required to find the gadget, and additionally warm dispersal prerequisites. Vast focal inverters are regularly effectively cooled. Cooling fans make a commotion, so the area of the inverter in respect to workplaces and possessed regions must be considered. What's more, since cooling fans have moving parts, soil, tidy, and dampness can adversely influence their execution after some time. String inverters are calmer yet may create a murmuring commotion in the late evening when inverter control is small.

If you wish to find out more about installing solar inverters in your home, watch this video below:

Bianca Broadstone
#1 Bianca BroadstoneAuthor 18 March, 2014, 12:37 Bianca is a businesswoman that managing multiple small business. She loves to write and she is an animal lover.