What are Latest Innovations and Future Trends in Smart Inverters Technology?

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Due to the high penetration level of DER (Distributed Energy Resources) the grid is posing a great amount of complex challenges on the functioning of inverters. As a solution for these common problems the smart inverters come into play by solving most of the problems of the traditional system. Since smart inverters work autonomously, they have a positive impact on the implemented residential sector as well as the national power grid. 

The traditional grid requires constant maintenance due to the stress, but smart inverters could help to address these localized challenges and grow the flexibility of the system. Smart inverters let two-way communication with utility control centers. In addition, advanced capabilities such as voltage and frequency sensors allow smart inverters to detect grid abnormalities and send the feedback to utility operators. The necessity of the smart solar inverter has been increasing day by day. SMART inverter technology provides some advantages to residential, commercial and utility-scale solar. This includes high redundancy through a distributed AC architecture that reduces system cost and improves operations and maintenance aspects. 

Functioning as the brain of the PV system, advanced inverter solutions are now responsible for communications, monitoring, smart energy management, storage, grid interaction, safety and more.

Let’s see what the experts have to say on Latest Innovations and Future Trends in Smart Inverters Technology

Due to the high penetration level of DER (Distributed Energy Resources), the grid is posing a great number of complex challenges on the functioning of inverters. As a solution for these common problems, the smart inverters come into play by solving most of the problems of the traditional system. Since smart inverters work autonomously, they have a positive impact on the implemented residential sector as well as the national power grid. The traditional grid requires constant maintenance due to the stress, but smart inverters could help to address these localized challenges and grow the flexibility of the system. Smart inverters let two-way communication with utility control centers. In addition, advanced capabilities such as voltage and frequency sensors allow smart inverters to detect grid abnormalities and send feedback to utility operators.

Delta’s smart solar inverter solutions enable smart and cost-effective designs for industrial and small utility-scale PV power plants by maximizing energy yields even in challenging landscapes and locations. The smart Inverter will have more DC overloading options, flexible MPPT channels, fuse-less or in-line fuse options, wireless communication systems, mobile friendly APPs etc. With the mentioned features systems will have reduced clipping losses and provide extra generation (kWh) than the conventional PCUs.

Nikhil Gupta, Business Head for PVI, Delta Electronics India Pvt Ltd


For smaller installations such as apartments and residences (and even commercial installations below 500kWp), we are seeing Enphase’s micro-inverters taking over mainly because they are providing better optimization on generation due to its ability to monitor solar power at the module levels. In addition to superior technology, the modularity of this inverter is attractive for those installations that will be increased in phases (let’s say 20kWp now, 20kWp in 6 months and so on), due to the ease of adding an extension of the system. It has many benefits even on the generation side, in research it has been said to generate 10% more if Enphase microinverters are used vs a String inverter but we will have to see this on site from our 1MWp Enphase installations going live in the next 6-10 months. This is mainly because the conversion happens on the module level, in regions with moving shadows the day-time generation can be improved with the microinverter. 

Additionally, installers save on BOS costs since the wiring is lesser in projects with complex layouts. They also provide better safety by converting DC (high current – planar) to AC (low current – sinusoidal) on module level which can prevent fire and other hazards on site. In addition to these in-built features, Enphase provides a monitoring system called Envoy which can be an add-on integration to the solar system using its microinverters. Envoy comes with much great monitoring and reporting features, that can be accessed by both the installer as well as the user based on their contract for O&M. Since it is integrated on the powerline an additional communication cable may not be necessary for data-collection & notifications. Considering all of this, micro-inverters are better even than string inverters with optimisers because the loss of a generation of failure is very less (considering only reliable brands where the probability of failure is low and due to external reasons). Also under the normal situation, SolarEdge with optimizers provides module level monitoring at two modules per optimizer level while Enphase provides it at each module level – but it will still perform as a string inverter.

Sanjeev Jha, Head of Operations, U-Solar Clean Energy

To read complete story download SolarQuarter India, March 2021 issue

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