Antigua’s well-built PV systems sustain impact of hurricane Irma

22.09.2017

The 6th September 2017 will remain as a notable day that all the people of Antigua and Barbuda will remember. Irma, the most powerful hurricane ever recorded in the Caribbean, exceeding category 5, has then hit the twin island state with its devastating power. The island of Barbuda suffered from the highest impact, with 90% of constructions wiped away by the strong wind blowing at consistently 300 km/h and way above in gusts. Anti gua at only 50 km distance from the eye of the storm and well within the devastating display of natural forces suffered less damage, but was affected seriously as well with sustained winds exceeding at times 275 km/h.

This devastating natural disaster has even more underlined the importance of a diligent and reliable approach in terms of planning and installing PV solar systems in hurricane-prone regions. Since the clean energy provider PV Energy has already beforehand adapted the design, mounting and structuring of its solar power racking systems and solar panels to the potential risk of hurricanes almost all solar systems designed and installed by PV Energy sustained the devastation through Irma.

Designed to withstand hurricanes of up to the category 4, each of the 55 solar power installations on Antigua, ranging from several kWp to the 3 MWp and 4 MWp utility scale installations at the international airport of Antigua and in the Lavington/Bethesda region with a total of 38,000 panels mounted, have survived hurricane Irma without damages or substantial system failures.

One of these PV systems, based on a 50 kWp sun2safe hybrid converter, was even able to generate 25% of its maximum expected performance during the worst hours of the hurricane, thanks to its proprietary MPPT tracking algorithm which is able to optimise the production even under extreme weather conditions. “This experience confirms our commitment to supplying tier one equipment only and adopt proven, reliable and diligently calculated and designed engineering solutions”, states PV Energy’s Chief Technical Officer Thomas Beindorf.

Load test for racking systems, ramming depths for the pillars of the substructures as well as reinforced frames and modules are just a few key factors to be considered for planning and installing robust solar energy plants. The following article further explains these quality guidelines: nacleanenergy.com/articles/27631/robust-solar-energy-plants-for-hurricane-prone-regions

Source: PV Energy Ltd.

Similar Entries

Antigua: While other buildings suffered severe damages, the rooftop solar installation remained unaffected from the hurricane. Photo: PV Energy

Photovoltaics systems withstood the hurricane in the Caribbean better than many buildings. Now they are an important element in rebuilding the infrastructure – and could provide Puerto Rico with the most modern electricity grid in the USA.

1500V string inverter SG125HV (photo: Sungrow)

At this year’s Intersolar Europe, Sungrow, the world’s leading PV inverter system solution supplier brings its latest 1500 V family, commercial PV products, residential PV products, and utility-scale energy storage systems. Backed by its cutting edge technology, Sungrow products are best characterized by their high yield, easy O&M, saved investment and complete grid support. All of these products are on show at stand 330 in hall B3.

TrinaBEST announced today that it has been awarded to design and construct a hybrid energy storage system in Nouakchott, Mauritania. This project is developed and operated by Damane Assurances Company. The project which encompasses 40kW solar system, 415kVA diesel generator system and 320 kWh energy storage system, is expected to be completed by the end of 2016. When completed, it will be one of the largest Microgrid energy storage projects in Mauritania.

By issuing several clean energy tenders, the Government of the CO-operative Republic of Guyana aims to reach the target of a 100% renewable energy supply in the country. Within the scope of this program, the Guyana Energy Agency has now awarded meeco and its local joint venture oursun Guyana the tender to supply, design and install five solar systems for the National Agricultural Resear ch and Extension Institute (NAREI). Upon completion, the five sites of the NAREI will thereby benefit from a clean energy supply ensured by sun2roof solar rooftop installations in combination with sun2safe energy management systems covering their internal energy needs.