Maintenance of Solar Plants

“Solar generation drops to nearly 30% if not cleaned and maintained regularly”

Solar power plant is the most economical way of producing electricity. With 300 sunny days in India, we have abundant solar irradiation to produce enough electricity meet our energy demand.

We need to maintain the solar power plant to get the maximum output without any trouble throughout its lifetime. The maintenance of solar plant includes following major activities.

  1. Cleaning of solar panels
  2. Maintenance of Solar inverter and balance of system
  3. Analysis of various performance parameters of solar plant.

Maintenance of Solar Panels

We must clean the solar panels with water at regular intervals 2-4 times in a month depending upon dirt accumulation, bird droppings or industrial contamination deposition as per site condition. Utility scale power plant may be cleaned on daily basis or every alternate day.

Solar PV panels are designed with a life span of 25 years or more. However, there are various factors affecting the power produced by panels and their life span.

These are Light induced degradation (LID), Potential induced degradation (PID), mismatch losses and cell damage due to potential concentration etc. We need to take into account all these factors while maintaining the solar panels.

Maintenance of Solar power conditioning unit (Inverter) and BOS

Inverter is the heart of the solar plant system. Inverter converts DC power generated by solar panels into AC power. Inverters are smart and having various safety features. If inverter is not functioning properly then all the power generated by solar panels will be a waste.

We need to do online monitoring of solar plant through inverter.

The maintenance of balance of system (BOS) are equally important. The DC/AC wires, earthing of system, mounting structure and junction boxes needs to be maintained at regular intervals.

Analysis of system performance of Solar Plant

The performance of solar plants needs to be monitored continuously to get optimum output.

The online monitoring of solar plant is the best option. The system parameters need to be downloaded and analysis to be done to understand the status of the power plant. Regular analysis of system parameters indicates the health of plant.

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