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Research Papers

A Solar Tracking System Based on Local Solar Time Integrated to Photovoltaic Systems

[+] Author and Article Information
Luiz A. S. Ferreira

Laboratory of Visual Communications,
Department of Communications,
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Campinas,
UNICAMP - Cidade Universitária Zeferino
Vaz - Av. Albert Einstein,
400 - Distrito Barão Geraldo,
Campinas 13083-852, São Paulo, Brazil
e-mail: luizfer@decom.fee.unicamp.br

Hermes J. Loschi

Laboratory of Visual Communications,
Department of Communications,
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Campinas,
UNICAMP - Cidade Universitária Zeferino
Vaz - Av. Albert Einstein,
400 - Distrito Barão Geraldo,
Campinas 13083-852, São Paulo, Brazil
e-mail: hermes@decom.fee.unicamp.br

Abel A. D. Rodriguez

Laboratory of Visual Communications,
Department of Communications,
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Campinas,
UNICAMP - Cidade Universitária Zeferino
Vaz - Av. Albert Einstein,
400 - Distrito Barão Geraldo,
Campinas 13083-852, São Paulo, Brazil
e-mail: duenas@decom.fee.unicamp.br

Yuzo Iano

Professor
Laboratory of Visual Communications,
Department of Communications,
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Campinas,
UNICAMP - Cidade Universitária Zeferino
Vaz - Av. Albert Einstein,
400 - Distrito Barão Geraldo,
Campinas 13083-852, São Paulo, Brazil
e-mail: yuzo@decom.fee.unicamp.br

Douglas A. do Nascimento

Laboratory of Visual Communications,
Department of Communications,
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering,
University of Campinas,
UNICAMP - Cidade Universitária Zeferino
Vaz - Av. Albert Einstein,
400 - Distrito Barão Geraldo,
Campinas 13083-852, São Paulo, Brazil
e-mail: eng.douglas.a@ieee.org

Contributed by the Solar Energy Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF SOLAR ENERGY ENGINEERING: INCLUDING WIND ENERGY AND BUILDING ENERGY CONSERVATION. Manuscript received May 16, 2017; final manuscript received November 10, 2017; published online February 20, 2018. Assoc. Editor: Geoffrey T. Klise.

J. Sol. Energy Eng 140(2), 021010 (Feb 20, 2018) (9 pages) Paper No: SOL-17-1186; doi: 10.1115/1.4039094 History: Received May 16, 2017; Revised November 10, 2017

The performance of photovoltaic (PV) systems is highly influenced by the tilt angle of PV modules and the incidence of global solar irradiance, which may change the solar to electrical conversion efficiency. Some authors have addressed these uncertainties arising from PV solar generation by using mechanisms and methods in which solar tracking systems are integrated to PV systems. Since the advent of the internet of things (IoT), this solar tracking strategy has yet to meet the requirements of scalable distributed power systems that can seamlessly support the PV solar generation, mainly for remote monitoring and control. In this context, this paper aims at developing a prospective study devoted to examine fundamental concepts to implement solar tracking algorithms based on local solar time by using embedded technology from the IoT platform. Preliminary results evidenced an improvement of up to 38% in power generation performance for algorithm-driven PV modules compared to fixed PV modules.

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References

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Figures

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Fig. 1

Angles for the position of the Sun (south hemisphere) [4]

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Fig. 2

Sun celestial sphere and coordinates relative to an observer on earth (south hemisphere) [4]

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Fig. 3

Different angles for the sun's position on a tilted surface (south hemisphere) [4]

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Fig. 4

Hardware parts: control and power

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Fig. 5

Installation of the PICAM camera

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Fig. 6

Illustration of the MPU-6050 accelerometer sensor

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Fig. 7

Illustration of the ACS712 current sensor

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Fig. 8

Schematic diagram for the electric circuit of the control component

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Fig. 9

Schematic diagram for the electric circuit of the power component

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Fig. 10

Hardware design: (a) development of control and power circuits, (b) installation of PICAM camera in the prototype, and (c) installation of MPU-6050 accelerometer sensor in the prototype

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Fig. 11

Stress analysis for the prototype structure in critical regions

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Fig. 13

Improvement on photovoltaic solar generation from a local solar time tracking strategy compared to fixed photovoltaic modules

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Fig. 12

Sun position from the image of a PICAM camera: (a) real image and (b) processed image

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