A novel fault diagnosis technique for photovoltaic systems based on artificial neural networks

Abstract

This work proposes a novel fault diagnostic technique for photovoltaic systems based on Artificial Neural Networks (ANN). For a given set of working conditions – solar irradiance and photovoltaic (PV) module’s temperature – a number of attributes such as current, voltage, and number of peaks in the current–voltage (I–V) characteristics of the PV strings are calculated using a simulation model. The simulated attributes are then compared with the ones obtained from the field measurements, leading to the identification of possible faulty operating conditions. Two different algorithms are then developed in order to isolate and identify eight different types of faults. The method has been validated using an experimental database of climatic and electrical parameters from a PV string installed at the Renewable Energy Laboratory (REL) of the University of Jijel (Algeria). The obtained results show that the proposed technique can accurately detect and classify the different faults occurring in a PV array. This work also shows the implementation of the developed method into a Field Programmable Gate Array (FPGA) using a Xilinx System Generator (XSG) and an Integrated Software Environment (ISE).

Keywords

  • photovoltaics;
  • Fault detection;
  • Fault diagnosis;
  • ANN;
  • FPGA

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