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UK Solar Power Record

 
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BritDownUnder



Joined: 21 Sep 2011
Posts: 380
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:17 am    Post subject: UK Solar Power Record Reply with quote

This forum is getting very quiet these days and especially in topics relating to alternative energy but I suppose that reflects the various contributor's sentiments and possibly the slowing effects of the UK heatwave.

Anyway, apparently the UK generated more power from solar than any other form of electricity generation. I am sure it was for a few minutes on a Saturday afternoon near to the Summer Solstice and during a heatwave but I think it is a start in the right direction. How all this electricity is stored with the NIMBYism that is prevalent in the UK remains to be seen and will no doubt be an engineering and financial challenge of it own.

Interestingly this was brought up in an Australian publication. Rather smugly the publication noted that...
Quote:
Solar and the UK are not words that are readily associated.


This got me thinking...

...that it is interesting to note that the area of the UK with the highest annual solar insolation (Cornwall) gets about the same amount in kWh/m2 in a year gets the same amount as the area of Australia (Western Tasmania) that gets the lowest amount of solar insolation and yet the UK has a much more advanced solar power generation system.
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fuzzy



Joined: 29 Nov 2013
Posts: 700
Location: The Marches, UK

PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 12:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Is it guaranteed that average solar installs will cope 25 yrs with temperatures of 40+C in really sunny places? Presumably this means panels of 80+C. Inverters won't like it. Panel voltages will drop, resistances up etc. The main problems with the UK are high condensation/corrosion [esp in DC systems], and low output in winter due mainly to latitude. Panels could be winter boosted with tracking reflector mirrors but daylight is about 7 hours in the UK North winter.
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6609
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Mon Jul 09, 2018 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pv modules should be fine in hot UK weather, they are used in places much hotter than the UK, and work fine.

High temperatures do reduce the output, but not by that that much, and again PV gives satisfaction in hotter places than the UK.

DC circuits are indeed vulnerable to corrosion, particularly on parts that are negative WRT earth. Modern installations are well insulated and seem OK in practice.

Inverters are potentially vulnerable to high temperatures and should IMO be kept as cool as possible subject other design constraints.
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BritDownUnder



Joined: 21 Sep 2011
Posts: 380
Location: Hunter Valley, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

fuzzy wrote:
Is it guaranteed that average solar installs will cope 25 yrs with temperatures of 40+C in really sunny places? Presumably this means panels of 80+C. Inverters won't like it. Panel voltages will drop, resistances up etc. The main problems with the UK are high condensation/corrosion [esp in DC systems], and low output in winter due mainly to latitude. Panels could be winter boosted with tracking reflector mirrors but daylight is about 7 hours in the UK North winter.


All I can say is that I have had panels for 7 years now and there has been a small reduction in output of maybe 5% in that time. The solid state panels so far seem to be OK with the high temperatures seen in Australia. So far I have not had DC corrosion problems such as the kind that destroy car battery terminals. Dampness is a non-issue in Australia but could be an issue in the UK I guess.

With regards to the 25 year warranty lifetime of panels it is too early to tell.
interestingly though if you take the 25 year lifetime of panels, the 5-10 year lifetime of inverter and 5000 cycles lifetime of batteries I came up with a lifetime cost per kWh of 1 cent for batteries, 2 cents for the inverter and 15 cents for battery storage so the panels are way the cheapest part of any solar PV / inverter / battery setup as long as they do last the warranty period. Chinese warranties may be a little suspect.
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RenewableCandy



Joined: 12 Sep 2007
Posts: 12580
Location: York

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I record the output of Chateau Renewable's roof every week. We've had it for 7 years now and I don't think its output has begun to decline as folk say systems do.

However, the inverter blew up in April (on Friday 13th!) and the new one set us bck 500 quid. So there is that.

We get about 850 kWh/kWp/yr out of ours.
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adam2
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Joined: 02 Jul 2007
Posts: 6609
Location: North Somerset

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would expect that the output would have declined, but only very slightly and this decline is probably swamped by natural variations in sunlight.

What did you do with the dead inverter ? they sell for £25 or more.
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RenewableCandy



Joined: 12 Sep 2007
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Location: York

PostPosted: Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It occurred to me to hand it over to 'RAG-BONE!' who comes along our street fttt, but in the end I just let the installer of the new one keep it. They were recommended by a firm I trust so I *hope* they took the trouble to get it sold for parts.

I almost chucked the little monitor, but that works from a signal from the wiring, so is independent of the type of inverter.

We lost 4 weeks'-worth of PV power because of being away when we could have been ringing round for a repairer. In April, Bummer.
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