Hot-spotting is a common problem in solar panel configurations that can potentially damage photovoltaic cells by forcing the conduction of reverse current in shaded or dysfunctional cells. The proposed invention offers a solution at the modular level by incorporating the photovoltaic panel into an open circuit to prevent hot-spotting. As a result, other panels in the photovoltaic string will remain functional under all adverse conditions.
Researchers from the University of Illinois have developed a method and apparatus to protect solar cells from hot spotting and damage resulting from arc faults. This device would also provide a way to shut off the solar array remotely. By preventing the damage caused by hot spotting and arc faults this device increases the longevity of solar arrays. It also reduces the risk of fire and provides a remote way to cut the power in cases of emergency.
Researchers from the University of Illinois have developed a new method to reduce the distortion in the output c urrent of multiple inverters used in DC to AC power conversion. This new technology helps to reduce the size and cost of the power electronic components currently used in power conversion. Also, this method is scalable and so this concept can be implemented on micro-scale systems.
Researchers from the University of Illinois have developed a device that will synchronize the output of DC/AC inverters for the purpose of combining them into a micro-grid. The system would instantly react to power supplies suddenly connecting or disconnecting without ever allowing any deviation from the present perameters. The benefits over current systems is the lack of communication needed, and the impossibility of dangerous surges while adjusting to sudden changes.
Dr. Arijit Banerjee from the University of IL has developed an integrated rectifier-generator system that improves power electronics architecture reducing bulkiness and weight of mega-watt rated systems. The architecture simplifies hardware and control schemes, improves efficiency of switch voltage ratings, and achieves ac-dc conversion at lower cost than conventional means. This system should be considered for the 2018 Department of Energy to mobilize a project pipeline of 25,434 MW of offshore wind turbine developments.
Dr. Arijit Banerjee from the University of Illinois has developed a system and method for maximum power point tracking (MPPT) in windmill turbine motors. This is a method uses an already disclosed and pursued integrated generator-rectifier system which has one active rectifier and several passive rectifier. Maximum power point tracking (MPPT) relies on using the small active rectifier to control the power flow of the whole system, because passive rectifiers don’t have this power flow control capability. It also reduces bulkiness, simplifies hardware and control schemes and improves efficiency of power electronics switch voltage ratings to achieve ac-dc conversion at medium voltage level.
Improved power-to-weight ratio, density, cost and efficiency in windmill turbine moters