Cracks can develop in solar panel at different stages, right from the time of manufacturing to their installation and operation. The most critical stage is when they are in use.
Problems arise mainly when small cracks develop in cells leading to fluctuations in power output. Identifying such cracks is like searching for a needle in a haystack.
The reported losses due to crack defects range from 5 to 10 percent during manufacturing. These cracks result in overall increase in production costs also.
A team of researchers at the Department of Electronics Engineering in J.C.Bose University of science and Technology, Faridabad, have developed a new technique that promises to help detect micro cracks in solar panels more effectively.
The key element of the strategy is the use of fuzzy logic.
The performance of solar panels is monitored using current sensors and other tools connected through an internet-assisted network, from a control room.
When there is a dip in production, it may be due to cracks in the panels.
In such a situation, images of suspected panels are taken with specialized silicon-cooled CCD cameras and these images are enhanced using fuzzy logic to identify cracks.
So far no one has used this approach for identifying cracked photovoltaic modules under real-time operational process. This has helped in achieving a more efficient identification of the cracks.
This is a ‘India Science Wire’ story; edited by Clean-Future Team