IoT based Solar Monitoring System for Solar Plants

What is the need for an IoT based solar monitoring system?

Efficiency through increased power generation for achieving better returns on investment of your Solar Energy plant hinges on the efficient harvesting of energy by the Solar Panels. This will happen only when the solar panels along with the sun’s trajectory produces power efficiently throughout the day.  Along with this, IoT based solar monitoring helps in monitoring of various aspects to provide useful insights.

A demerit with the existing solar tracker, which was designed to harvest energy throughout the day, was that it followed a single trajectory. Such a trajectory meant that the orientation of the solar panels (payloads) was not optimized as per the changing position of the Sun from dawn to dusk. This resulted in power output that was less than the estimated annual power generation.  With the help of IoT based solar tracker, solar panels can be made to stay aligned with solar rays, thereby vastly improving solar power generation. Along with IoT based solar tracking for optimum power output, the solar monitoring system also helps in keeping a watchful eye on various performance parameters of the solar power facility.

Here’s more detail on it.

Features of the solar monitoring system:

Solar energy system’s performance, and Energy usage

The IoT based solar monitoring system has high-quality sensors such as the pyranometer/irradiance sensor, temperature sensor, environment sensors etc. that sense and record the real-time data.

The IoT based solar monitoring system performs centralised remote monitoring and tracking the real time performance data of the solar assets such as performance degradation, energy usage, downtime, losses etc causing generation loss.

  • Information regarding when and how the system is being loaded. 
  • How much energy your system should be generating vs actual energy generated on any given day.

The IoT platform also assists in monitoring the gap between actual energy generated and the expected energy generation. The data received from different sensors are recorded and an analysis is done. With this analysis, it becomes possible to monitor the real-time gap between the expected and generated energy. This enables the customer to make future decisions depending on the historical stored data.

Alerts and faults diagnostics

The monitoring system comes with an alarming function incase of high temperature or fuse abnormalities etc. (the alarming function can be set as per the parameter and location requirement). 

IoT based Solar Monitoring

Working of the IoT based solar monitoring system:

  • The rooftop solar energy system consists of several solar panels wired together, these solar panels using photovoltaic processes convert solar radiations into the direct current. The next step involves conversion of DC energy into AC energy (most of the residential loads and grid-connected works on AC supply) using an inverter.
  • The IoT based solar energy monitoring system consists of a series of sensors placed at a distinct location to monitor and track the solar panel output performance. 
  • These sensors  measure the irradiation, ambient temperature, module temperature, wind speed and other parameters affecting the solar panel and its components.
  • The generated data is transferred to the IoT gateway and is uploaded to the cloud to monitor the data.
  • The data uploaded on the cloud can be easily accessed at any time by the user and installer through the monitoring application.
  • To get access to this continuous data a well-versed system with consistent connectivity including the cellular/wifi network is important.
  • For stable functioning of the IoT based solar energy monitoring system, proper network connectivity is an important parameter to ensure accurate data tracking.     

Features of the Dashboard for solar monitoring

Here’s a list of the key features of the IoT based solar monitoring system dashboard:

Management Dashboard

It helps in smooth management & control of Multi Plant Portfolio from a single dashboard.

It also provides actionable insights to Management. Multiple plants can be compared across technology and various parameters can be monitored on a single dashboard.

Technical Dashboard

Using the technical dashboard, various technical parameters relating to plant, inverter and string wise can be monitored and compared. It helps in getting a high level overview of plant and a performance summary of solar power plant.

Weather Dashboard

The weather dashboard helps track weather conditions of plant. It also helps to predict generation losses & provides alerts for maintenance. 

With the weather dashboard, it becomes easy to capture weather parameters like wind speed & direction, Humidity, air and module temperature, Air Pressure.

You can easily make decisions using the Solar Irradiation v/s Power v/s PR curves provided through the solar management weather dashboard.

Analytics & Custom Alerts

Key Outcomes

It helps you achieve overall performance management of the Plant.

It also helps identify underperforming plants with reasons. Here’s what you get with the dashboard:  

  • Multiple graph view on single dashboard
  • Reporting of Critical Health parameter
  • Selectable Parameter Comparison of devices of same/ different plant
  • Generation Analysis
  • Complete Energy reporting of plant
  • Energy trends v/s expected generation
  • Energy analysis and comparatives of transformer, Solar meter, net meter

Benefits of IoT based Solar monitoring system

Monitor real Time parameters

IOT Based Solar Monitoring System monitors the Real time Power generation by Solar Plant and Weather conditions.

Dynamic Operation & Maintenance Tool

Provides alerts on any malfunction. Tells you the issue in real time and take corrective action immediately.

Forecast Performance

Tells you about the Projected Power Generation by your solar plant.

Performance Ratio

Gives you insights into performance of solar plant, Inverter, panel in real time.

Optimize Performance

Helps you access and monitor all performance parameters, enabling you to take corrective action to optimize the performance

PsiBorg , an IoT development company, specializes in building IoT dashboards for monitoring  such as IoT based monitoring systems for solar power monitoring. Hence, do reach out to us for smart IoT based systems for solar monitoring.

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