Visit to Plant

Riverside Solar Plant Facilities Survive Flood of River (page 4)

Remote monitoring of PV inverters added after automatic recovery failure

2019/10/29 14:56
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP Intelligence Group, CleanTech Labo
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Panels annually washed with groundwater

Weeds have been prevented from growing just as planned (Fig. 7). Almost no weeds have grown in the asphalted perimeter area. In addition, herbicide has also been used.

Fig. 7: Well-controlled weeds (source: Nikkei BP)

It is also difficult for weeds to grow in the solar panel area where crushed stones were spread and roller-compacted. The solar panels are washed with water once a year. Although the mega-solar plant is located on a former quarry, the production of crushed stones continues in an adjacent site, from which dirt is frequently blown and accumulates on the solar panels (Fig. 8).

Fig. 8: Dirt annually washed off with groundwater (source: Nikkei BP)

The dirt on the panels is mostly washed off by rain. However, dirt tends to remain near the stepped edge between the bottom of the panels and the frames. The annual cleaning is carried out with the aim of washing out such dirt around the frames. A well was dug so groundwater can be used for this cleaning.

Eaves have been attached to the combiner boxes (Fig. 9).

Fig. 9: Eaves additionally set up (source: Nikkei BP)

The breaker blew once as a result of the temperature rising inside the combiner box on a hot summer day, and the eaves were set up after that as a measure against high temperatures. They are more effective than expected because the same phenomenon has never occurred since the eaves were attached.

This solar plant is also characterized by the mousetraps attached to the mounting systems (Fig. 10). The mousetraps were adopted during construction when the number of mice sharply increased in the rice and vegetable fields near the power plant. Farmers in the neighborhood came and asked the power plant to take countermeasures, believing the mice that had lived in and around the mega-solar site relocated to their fields. The mousetraps seem to be effective, as they sometimes catch the rodents.

Fig. 10: Mousetraps (source: Nikkei BP)

Facility overview