Solar Panel Inspections
Rapidly inspect solar assets for damage or defects using drone based visual and thermal data
Solar in Australia
Australia experiences the highest incidence of average Direct Normal Irradiance (DNI) of any country in the world. This offers an amazing opportunity for Australia to harness this solar energy through the use of photovoltaic panels. Data from the Australian PV Institute shows a strong and steady growth in PV installations since 2010. Recent figures from the Clean Energy Australia Report 2020 indicate that solar energy harvested from both rooftop installations and large scale solar farms have contributed to 7.5% of Australia's total energy production.
Monitoring Solar Panels
Throughout their lifetime solar panels are exposed to an array of environmental and human based factors which can lead to deterioration in their power output and operational safety. If left undiagnosed these faults can lead to severe reductions in energy output and increased fire risks. Drone based aerial thermography and visual inspections provides asset owners with a rapid and cost effective method for monitoring the condition of the photovoltaic solar assets. When compared with conventional handheld thermographic or IV curve tracing approaches to solar panel inspection, drone based inspections offer up to a massive increase in efficiency, inspection times and cost savings.
Reduce the risk to workers by minimising the time spent in the field during inspections. Drone based solar panel inspections can be conducted without requiring operators to come in physical contact with any components of a solar system.
Drone solar panel inspections reduce costs to asset owners by providing a more effective approach to defect identification. Locating defective panels allows asset managers to quickly remedy issues causing loss of power generation and therefore profits.
Compared to handheld thermography or IV Curve Tracing, aerial thermography can cover as much as 20 X the panels in the same time. Faster coverage results in earlier detection and accelerated repairs or replacements.
Current methods require electricians and solar technicians to traverse solar farms or climb ladders to reach rooftop installations. In many cases panels will have to be disconnected and isolated, resulting in further unnecessary power generation losses. Using drone based scans, a pilot can inspect huge areas of solar arrays from a single safe location.
Drone Technologies utilise a combination of on-site screening and artificial intelligence based post processing, to produce a comprehensive report detailing identified defects, including but not limited to:
Faulty Bypass Diodes
Potential Induced Degradation (PID)