Robots are controlling everything. Now Robotic Solar-Panel Sun Tracking project is about the tracking and controlling the solar panels using travelling robot technology. Solar Robots help to increase the efficiency of the solar power system. For a photovoltaic solar panel, following the sun’s path across the sky raises efficiency by 30-50%. This robotic sun tracker is the latest advancement to the existing dual-axis solar tracking technology that use a costly DC motor with each of the solar panel.
Sun/Solar Tracking Technology
The main disadvantage of the solar power systems is its lower efficiency. The sun, the lighting source moves continuously whereas the solar panel is fixed to to a particular direction. And in the night time, there is a possibility that solar panels can generate a small amount of power from the moon light. Using the light source tracking technology, it is possible to track the sun or moon or any other brighter lighting sources, so that the solar panels can be turned towards the direction of light source to maximize the power output of photo-voltaic (PV) solar panels. the light source tracking technology is usually called as sun tracking system or solar tracker system, because it is mainly used for tracking the sun’s maximum solar energy during the day time.
Robotic Solar Tracking System Design
Travelling Robot Solar Tracking System that control the dual-axis of more than 200 solar panels using only one DC Motor
The objective of this project is to design and develop an Automatic Solar Tracker Robot that is capable to track maximum light intensity and control the direction of solar panels. The solar tracker system that follows the sun direction for producing maximum voltage out is mounted on the robot and the DC motors utilizes this energy for robot movement. The robot base can be controlled through computer using wireless Zigbee technology. The efficiency of the solar energy conversion can be optimized by receiving maximum light on the solar panel. The main components of the robot consist of microcontrollers, LDR sensors, DC motors and digital compass. This robot is programmed to detect sunlight by using Light Dependent Resistors (LDR).
Normal Solar Tracker Vs Robotic Solar Tracking Systems
In large solar power grids, It is common for ground mounted PV solar panels to use solar trackers to tilt panels to follow the sun throughout the day, the use of robots for solar trackers is highly unusual. Existing solar trackers on the market are designed to hold up solar panels as well as to adjust their tilt, and commonly come with their own motors and electronics. There is generally two types of these solar trackers, single-axis and dual-axis, and dual-axis systems make finer angle adjustments and they are more expensive because they require more motors.
Robotic Solar Trackers perform dual-axis adjustments at the price of the same-sized single-axis solar trackers and enable the panels to produce up to 30 percent more electricity. Robotic Solar Tracker design essentially replaces the motors in each tracker with a robot that calibrates the optical angle for each set of solar panels and positions them accordingly.
Robotic Solar Trackers can cut total energy costs by 15% while increasing electricity generation by 30% to 40% over systems that don’t track the sun. Additionally The robots can be controlled through computer using wireless Zigbee technology.
In addition to tweaking the sun angle, the battery-powered robot, which has an on-board GPS, can gather data on the performance of panels.
Compared to normal solar tracking system, Instead of having the hardware to adjust the angle on every solar panel, Robotic Solar Tracking System has a traveling robot equipped with the motor needed to change the angle of several solar panels. The system can be installed to tilt 200 panels or be scaled up for larger solar farms.