This plant is the largest PV plant in Qatar and the third-largest single PV plant in the world. It contributes to the country’s commitment to host a carbon-neutral FIFA World Cup in 2022.
Figure 1 800MWp PV plant
|IPP||Marubeni & Total|
|EPC||PowerChina Guizhou Engineering|
|Solution||Bifacial PV modules + Tracking system + String inverter|
Carbon neutrality has become a global consensus. Qatar announced a national vision of carbon neutrality by 2030. This 800MWp PV plant provides clean power at competitive prices and reduces dependence on fossil energy and carbon emissions in Qatar.
Qatar is located on the southwest coast of the Persian Gulf, rich in natural gas and oil resources. This 800MW PV plant is located 80 kilometers west of Doha. Qatar is geomorphologically suitable for utility-scale PV plants with frequent sandstorms and 50℃ temperatures. Construction is very difficult, and it also bring higher challenges to the stable operation of the inverter, transformer and other electrical equipment.
Qatar 800MWp PV plant is divided into two phases. The first 400 MWp phase construction and grid connection was completed in 2021. The next 400 MWp was connected to the grid in 2022. The PV plant adopts bifacial PV modules and tracking systems. There are 108 units of 6.75MW blocks in this plant and the DC/AC ratio is about 1.2. More than 1.8 million LONGi “Hi-MO 4” 440W bifacial PV modules were installed. Sungrow provides 3240 1500V string inverter SG250HX and 96 MV Station MVS6750-LV.
Figure 2 SG250HX String Inverter + 6.75MVA MV Station
Effective heat dissipation perfectly adapts bifacial PV modules + tracking system
Located in the desert, with abundant sunshine resources and high ambient temperature this project adopts bifacial PV modules plus tracking systems. The reflectivity of sand is high, therefore, the power generation of the bifacial PV module’s backside will increase, coupled with the tracking system, the inverter will work at rated power for a long time at 50℃ ambient temperature. This puts forward high requirements on the performance of the inverter.
The Sungrow SG250HX inverter adopts intelligent air-cooling technology. The MV Station MVS6750-LV dissipates heat through the heat exchanger. These technologies enable more efficient heat dissipation. The inverter and MV Station can perfectly adapt bifacial PV modules + tracking systems in Qatar’s hot and sandy environment and operate at rated power for a long time as required in this project. Which in turn guarantees the owner’s profit in the whole life cycle of the PV plant.
High ingress protection grade adapts to the desert environment
The harsh environment of the desert has a significant impact on the inverter. First, sand could lead to blockage in the heat dissipation channel, which deteriorates the heat dissipation and performance of the inverter. The inverter could run derated resulting in reduced power generation. Second, sand entering the equipment can also affect the electrical insulation and even lead to internal short circuits.
The inverter SG250HX adopts a double cavity design, where the electronic cavity and cooling cavity are entirely isolated. The electronic cavity is fully sealed, sand and water cannot enter the electronic cavity. As a result, the SG250HX inverter has achieved IP66 grade and can perform reliably in the desert environment.
Online I-V curve diagnosis improves O&M efficiency
The 800 MWp PV plant in Qatar has installed more than 1.8 million modules with more than 600,000 module strings. During operation, many problems could occur: modules shielded by dust; panel breakage; PID attenuation, etc. all result in power generation loss. Traditional IV test requires professional equipment and PV plant downtime during on-site testing. It is often necessary to find the problem manually after the fault detection is completed using a traditional method. This is time-consuming and expensive, which increases the difficulty of O&M. SG250HX inverter integrates online smart I-V curve diagnosis function. Through the DC current sensor configured in each PV string, the I-V data of PV modules can be collected by the monitoring system. The health of the PV modules is analyzed online by advanced algorithms. The monitoring system can locate the abnormal module and provide maintenance suggestions to O&M staff. Online smart I-V curve diagnosis greatly improves O&M efficiency and reduces power generation loss of the PV plant.
SummaryThis 800MWp PV plant has great significance in Qatar. It can provide 1.8 billion kWh of clean power every year, which can meet 10% of the country’s total electricity demand. This plant will reduce 26 million tons of CO₂ during its lifetime, supporting the country’s goal of reducing carbon emissions by one million tons per year. This project helps Qatar to achieve its national vision 2030 goal and contributed to the country’s commitment to host a carbon-neutral FIFA World Cup in 2022. It is key to achieving the goal of sustainable development and reducing the reliance on gas for power generation.