Photovoltaic Systems Manufacturing (PSM) has chosen Draker Labs, a monitoring solutions provider for commercial and institutional solar photovoltaic (PV) systems, for monitoring PV system which will be set up at 14 schools in Arizona. Public power provider Salt River Project (SRP) is funding the maintenance and installation of PV systems that are rooftop mounted.
SRP will offer classroom materials and training associated with renewable energy to teachers. Data gathered from the monitoring solutions of Draker Labs will be made available to faculty and students.
Each of the 14 Arizona schools is likely to be installed with the Sentalis 1000PV platform of Draker Labs. This platform includes a web-interface for managing and reporting data as well as hardware. This hardware comprises a base station which gathers information taken from instruments placed on solar panels among other PV equipment, in addition to a range of sensors that measure wind conditions, solar irradiance and ambient temperature. The base station features a datalogger of Campbell Scientific which gathers information before sending it to the servers of Draker Labs for processing.
The Sentalis web-interface of Draker Labs can be used to monitor the performance of the system. The complete portfolio of projects and site-specific data can be seen as in a dashboard view through this web-interface. Interactive graphs indicate historic and real-time information on different system-level metrics, such as ‘expected versus actual’ energy production. An alarm is sent to the personnel in-charge of maintenance via text message or e-mail, when the system detects a drop in performance.