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Photovoltaic (PV) Array comprising of solar panels are the predominant power generation components of renewable distributed energy resources (DER), solar farms with grid-tied inverters, islanding microgrids, and smart grids. PV Array converts solar radiation energy into
direct current using semiconductors and then to alternating current electric power through inverters.
ETAP Renewable Energy module includes three methods for studying photovoltaic power systems when combined with the appropriate network analysis capabilities and simulation scenarios:
Solar designers and planners can model and size, discrete solar photovoltaic panels, grid connected inverters, solar combiners and collector systems, system grounding, and more.
Photovoltaic Array and Solar Panel elements are part of the Renewable Energy module and integrated with ETAP calculation modules and visualization foundations including:
Photovoltaic characteristics including P-V and I-V curves are defined in the user-configurable ETAP Photovoltaic Library or specifying the maximum peak power voltage (Vmpp), maximum peak power current (Impp), open circuit voltage (Voc) and short
circuit current (Isc).
ETAP considers the effect of performance coefficients (α, β, γ) that define ranges in irradiance and cell temperature to automatically calculate the expected power output from the photovoltaic array.
Photovoltaic Array element includes a built-in Solar Irradiance Calculator based on sun position to estimate solar irradiance incident upon a location. Solar Irradiance is the power per unit area available at a location due to solar radiation.
ETAP Solar Irradiance Calculator is especially useful when designing or estimating electrical power output from the panels without knowledge of the entire network.
In ETAP Photovoltaic Array Library, the characteristics curve can be estimated based on the maximum peak power voltage (Vmpp), maximum peak power current (Impp), open circuit voltage (Voc), short circuit current (Isc), and series connected cell
The estimation calculation is conducted with either a One-Diode or Two-diode Circuit Model and curve fitting techniques within user-definable maximum deviation. Estimated curve is populated into the PV editor for system calculation.
In addition to the existing PVA models, more than 17,000 models from California Energy Commission (CEC) Solar Equipment List have been imported into ETAP Photovoltaic Array Library with estimated characteristic curve in ETAP 20.5.0.
Renewable energy systems continue to be one of the fastest growing segments of the energy industry. This presentation focuses on the understanding of how photovoltaic (PV) technology behaves under dc arc conditions. A comparative analysis of the arc flash incident energy calculation method developed in collaboration between National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) and ETAP details the effect of PV module I-V and P-V curves under arcing conditions. Examples of the application of the proposed calculation method to the test measurements are included.
An overview to photovoltaic array modeling and simulation using the ETAP software for solar panel sizing and grid impact analysis.
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