In comparison to the 1000V system, the 1500V system is capable of reducing nearly 20% of cable costs, leading to a lower cost of roughly US$ 3 cents per watt. The increase to direct voltage at 1500V helps to improve efficiencies, by allowing more modules to be connected in every string and reducing the amount of cabling. This in turn leads the system to be improved by more than 1%. With a drive to cut costs in the solar industry, it is important that inverters improve generating efficiency, electricity quality and environmental adaptability and give the opportunity for more intelligent O&M. Many believe that the 1500V PV system will dominate the solar industry in the future.
Some snipets from the webinar slides:
• With the increase in DC input voltage, there can be a corresponding increase in AC output voltage.
• Moving from 480VAC to 600VAC allows a 20% reduction in current at the same power level, so wire sizes can be reduced by 2 gauges
• More power can be delivered over the same wire sizes
Where are the real savings?
• Premium for 1500V solar panels
• Premium for 1500V BOS components
• Reduction in installation labor costs (number of installed components, less trenching, wire)
• Savings in wire on a per/watt basis
• Continuing pressure for lower cost inverters with higher efficiency
• String inverters offer a lower risk of long term ownership because the replacement costs are very small compared to central inverters.
• EPCs claim an over-all installed cost reduction in the range of 20% to 25% (site specific variables: cost of wire, local labor, system architecture, use of trackers, and choice of inverters)
In the webinar we have learned prices as low as 75 Dollar Cent per Watt are possible!
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