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Thermographic Inspection of Photovoltaic Energy Systems

Thermographic Inspection of Photovoltaic Energy Systems, PV systems play an important role in energy production using technology that converts solar energy into electrical energy. The reliability and efficiency of PV systems are ensured by regular maintenance and inspection. Thermographic inspection plays a critical role in photovoltaic energy systems to assess the health and performance of the system.

Inspecting the solar power plant area with a handheld thermal imager is time consuming. Some areas may also be missed during thermal inspections. Handheld thermal imaging tools are more suitable for inspecting small areas. With the developing technology, conducting inspections in solar power plants with drone (UAV) allows us to obtain faster results and to obtain accurate and precise results.

What is Thermographic Inspection in Photovoltaic Power Plants?

A powerful way to monitor temperature changes is known as infrared thermal imaging, or thermography for short. Infrared light is located in a part of the electromagnetic spectrum that cannot be detected by the human eye and is emitted by hot objects. This feature is exploited by thermal cameras. Instead of taking images like a normal camera, these special cameras take pictures of heat. By converting infrared (IR) radiation into clear and understandable images, they can assess the temperature distribution on a surface.

Thermal cameras are an extremely effective tool for checking and diagnosing a range of structural problems, from mechanical systems and electrical equipment to leaking roofs, moisture ingress and energy loss. Thermal imaging goes beyond traditional methods to detect anomalies within the structure.

With the use of a thermal camera, anomalies found in PV panels can be diagnosed at an early stage so that timely intervention can prevent further damage. Furthermore, problems with energy efficiency can also be identified and corrected, saving energy. All these advantages make thermal drones an indispensable tool for improving the efficiency of solar panels.

Thermographic inspection in photovoltaic energy systems is the process of measuring the surface temperatures of PV modules using a drone with a thermal camera. This technique helps to detect faults that may occur in PV modules, ineffective cells or electrical connection errors.

High-resolution thermal cameras show temperature differences on the module surface to identify problems in the system. This inspection is vital for optimizing system performance and reducing maintenance costs.

How is PV Inspection Performed?

Points to Consider During the Inspection:

Thermal inspection procedures must be performed in accordance with the airborne thermography flight instructions specified by MapperX.

Areas Close to Cells: Pay attention to the connections between the cells and the temperature differences in these areas.

Module Edges and Roof Connections: Cracks or poorly insulated areas that may cause water leaks are evident in thermal images.

Shading Areas: Shading reveals temperature differences in certain areas, which can adversely affect panel performance.

Analysis and Reporting: Inspection results are recorded as thermal images and analyzed in MapperX artificial intelligence software, first detecting faults. This data provides valuable insight into the condition of each panel. Once problem areas are identified, repairs and maintenance can be scheduled.

Thermographic inspection in photovoltaic energy systems is critical for the reliability and efficiency of the system. Performing it regularly ensures the longevity of the solar energy system, increases energy efficiency and reduces operating costs. Therefore, owners of photovoltaic energy systems need to adopt thermographic inspection at regular intervals as a routine. This not only improves energy efficiency, but also contributes to environmental sustainability.

MapperX detects malfunctions and causes of malfunctions in SPP sites with 99% accuracy thanks to its artificial intelligence software. It remotely detects obstacles that reduce the performance of the plant and visualizes them in order of importance.

The main features of MapperX are as follows:

Fault detection with artificial intelligence: MapperX detects faults by analyzing the temperature data of PV panels.

Digital twin technology: MapperX creates a digital twin of solar power plants, analyzing the cause and impact of failures in more depth.

Anomaly detection: MapperX detects anomalies in the plant’s performance, helping to identify potential problems in advance.

Efficiency analysis: MapperX analyzes the efficiency of the plant and provides recommendations to improve performance.

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