Over the past few years diffusion of photovoltaics, understood to be a clean and basically free energy production system, has spread widely and widely.
The growing awareness of the benefits that can be ensured by this technology continues to encourage more families and companies to choose to install photovoltaic systems to meet energy needs, in terms of respect for themselves and the environment.
After installation, the photovoltaic system still requires periodic revisions (scheduled maintenance) and this is to maximize electricity production for 25/30 years of service life.
But what is the maintenance of a photovoltaic system?
In a growing sector, such as renewable energy, only experienced and trained operators can guarantee the certainty of results and work carried out in accordance with the rules of art. Today, then, we want to discuss the O & M (Operation and Maintenance) problem of a photovoltaic system, consisting of what time and why it is very important.
The importance of signing a contract that covers plant maintenance
The importance of maintaining a photovoltaic system. Photovoltaic systems are, in essence, industrial plants and, therefore, require both “scheduled maintenance” (on schedule) and, especially for medium and large-sized plants, from “preventive” maintenance.
Scheduled maintenance activities are a kind of “service coupon” and involve the implementation of a series of standard and sequential checks on each component of the installation and on the installation as a whole. Questions that must be answered by scheduled maintenance interventions are as follows: Does the system function properly and produce electricity as expected?
On the other hand, preventive maintenance must be able to predict every degradation situation and damage that can affect factory productivity, with periodic checks going beyond mere scheduled maintenance. Preventing is always better than cure. But for certain parts, corrective maintenance is able to provide sufficient protection.
Therefore, it is very important that the factory supply/installation contract, which is determined by the supplier, also provides adequate after-sales assistance and this is to “maintain” the investment made.
The main objective of adequate O & M services must be to exclude each shutdown and reduce as much time as possible where the factory does not produce what it can do.
What are the main problems that our photovoltaic system can cause?
Some problems that can arise in our factory are related to the poor quality of the components and materials used, which do not meet the best quality standards.
The main components, such as modules and inverters, if the quality is low, decreases faster and is more likely to experience obsolescence, decreased performance, damage and/or damage.
Furthermore, troublesome problems can occur due to incorrect system installation. Incorrect analysis of the condition/characteristics of the location (land, roof, etc.) Or busy installing installations, without careful prevention analysis, can cause errors that then require retrofit/improvement interventions to respect project choices.
This criticality significantly affects the productivity of the photovoltaic system and does not always find a solution with the intervention of the installer. It is therefore easy to understand the importance of good O & M services, which also include the CMMS used, which is offered by skilled and qualified sector operators.
What maintenance services should a good operator offer to their customers?
Companies that supply photovoltaic systems must always be able to offer complete O & M services.
This is because the return on investment in the case of a photovoltaic system depends entirely on its productivity. Therefore, the operator must ensure that the generator always produces the best of its capabilities.
In this case, the most important phase is the initial design of the plant, which must be done in a way that is like a worker, with a careful eye also on plant management and maintenance throughout the entire life cycle.