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Photovoltaic and Wind energy Inverter Question

  1. Sep 17, 2014 #1
    I have just begun my power electronics class, but have already seen what an inverter is. My question is: is there a difference between the topologies that function with photovoltaic systems and wind energy ones?

  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 18, 2014 #2


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    What do you think? What have you found out about the two technologies so far and how are they different? There is an awful lot of information available about the two, on the Internet.
  4. Sep 18, 2014 #3
    I guess it depends on what level of abstraction you're considering. At the highest level, they're both just grid-tie inverters, so, in that respect, they're not any different.

    The differences come into play when you start looking at the "sub-topologies" used to implement the stages of grid-tie inverters for PV and wind turbine systems and how they're controlled. There can, for instance, be large differences in the implementation of grid-tie inverters for residential PV systems and those designed for wind turbines, mainly due to their large difference in DC-link voltage and power rating. Flyback topologies, for example, aren't typically that great when you start exceeding 5-10 kW, but they're very popular below that due to their simplicity and low cost. There are other considerations as well, e.g. the power output of a wind turbine can change rapidly in time, which the inverter has to be designed to handle.

    Control-wise, there's a difference in how the inverter should present itself as a load to the PV system or wind turbine generator. For PV systems, you generally want it to track the maximum power point of your PV array. For a wind turbine generator, you generally want it to be aware that there's a huge block of copper and iron rotating furiously at its other end.

    I can't really say much more without knowing the specifics of what you're after.
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