Electrical Power & Protection

Solar plant monitoring and control

February 2020 Electrical Power & Protection

The power industry is now ready for clean power such as solar energy. Utility-scale solar power stations with electric power capacity of more than 50 MW and the capability to feed excess power back to the electric grid for future consumption, are being built to meet the growing demand for solar power.

A utility-scale solar power plant can consist of hundreds to thousands of solar collectors. Plant operators need to collect and process data from numerous devices located at remote sites to achieve high energy efficiency. System requirements include:

• Industrial-grade embedded edge computer for remote monitoring, data acquisition, data logging, and protocol conversion of inverter data to monitor solar panel effectiveness.

• Low power consumption to maximise the electrical output of a solar power plant.

• Reliable operation in wide-temperature outdoor environments.

• Web-based remote monitoring of solar array performance, battery load, and environmental data from sensors.

• Sunlight-readable HMI for inverter control.

The Moxa solution

• Rugged fanless UC-8100-ME-T and UC-5100 IIoT gateways with wide -40 to 70°C operating temperature range.

• Multiple I/O UC-5100 IIoT gateway to directly connect with sensors.

• Ready-to-run ThingsPro software solution for Modbus data acquisition and Modbus-to-MQTT protocol conversion.

• 1000-nit sunlight-readable MPC-2070 HMI panel computer.


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