Tassis Energy and in the field concerning failures in photovoltaic systems.
There are approximately 42,000 roofs in Greece with an installed interconnected photovoltaic system and included in the Special Programme “PV on roofs of buildings” from 2009 to date. Also more than 10,000 PV parks are hosted on fields and industrial roofs interconnected to the national grid.
Despite any distortions in contractual issues and financial constants that have plagued the renewable energy and especially photovoltaic systems, PV is one of the most secure and profitable investments in Greece.
A photovoltaic installation, regardless of size and interconnection, is a modern electromechanical device which, due to its location, is exposed to all environmental conditions and to direct or indirect contact with buildings and/or people.
In a PV system there is a high electrical voltage, strong wind pressure, humidity, radiation, wear and tear and other factors that increase the risk for structures and above all for people living, moving, working near it.
Unfortunately, the danger of a PV system has not been realized when it is either not designed and installed according to the international rules of engineering works or not adequately maintained according to the standards of PV systems.
According to data available to TASSIS Energy from the PV systems that it maintains (residential and parks), 1 in 3 systems has significant technical failures and errors that usually exist from the initial installation and are detected during the first regular technical inspection! Failures and faults that are capable of being a strong source of risk to the equipment, the building, the environment and people.
In a sample of 300 PV systems concerning installations with the Roof and Park programme, on building and on ground, installed from 2006 to 2015, manufactured by existing and non-existing companies, errors and failures can be categorised according to their cause as follows:
- PV system design failures:
Non-optimal system design
Non-compliance with instructions of panel, inverter, base manufacturers
Non-knowledge or failure to comply with urban planning and other regulations and laws
Absence or inadequacy of protection and control equipment
Failure to design and provide for
Absence of specific technical software and design tools
Non-compliance with manufacturers’ instructions (panels, inverters, base)
Failure to follow instructions (e.g. lack of installation instructions, failure to follow installation instructions, failure to install modules (e.g. inverters, inverters)
Sloppiness – haste
Lack of supervision by a qualified engineer
Non-compliance with general rules of technical works
Insufficient or no training of PV owner
Illegal installations (often without the owner’s knowledge)
Any combination of the above
Absence or inadequate technical maintenance and inspection
Absence of telemetry and operational control
Failure of equipment
Malicious acts – Adverse weather conditions
The results of the above failures are damage, reduced performance (from the beginning or afterwards), damage to buildings, damage to equipment and the environment, and most importantly… DANGEROUS (IN)SITUATIONS FOR MAN. Often without his knowledge!
Two out of three installations have incomplete grounding protection, half do not have the optimal design for maximum efficiency of their equipment, most lack safety equipment while deliverable plans – instructions and studies are a concept unknown to most PV system owners. Blown fuses, electrical leakage faults, reduced performance, corrosion, building insulation damage, inverters with premature failures, PID, Hotspots, lightning strikes…
Ignorance is the key word. Either to technicians or owners. How many technicians are certified and qualified for PV systems?
The solution to PV system failures on existing PV installations?
REGULAR TECHNICAL MAINTENANCE AND INSPECTION by qualified technical staff.
TASIS Energy, has qualified engineers of polytechnic university qualified and certified according to the European PVTRIN PV installer certification program with nationwide maintenance coverage. It provides high quality services and maintenance packages for any type of PV system, 24-hour technical support, experience and expertise.
Technical failures and faults of PV systems