New Industry Products

UL-Listed 1500-Volt String Level DC-DC Optimizer

July 28, 2018 by Paul Shepard

Alencon Systems LLC will demonstrate its full line-up of SPOT dc-dc optimizers at SPI 2018 in Anaheim, CA September 25 - 27, 2018 in booth #3227. The SPOT family of products includes the SPOT 600, 1000 and 1500, all of which have been listed to UL1741 as well as CSA C22.2 and IEC 62109-1, for the Canadian and other overseas markets respectively. The SPOT 1500, released earlier this year, is the first, true 1500-volt PV string level dc-dc optimizer to receive UL listing.

The Alencon SPOT family of dc-dc optimizers is a unique solution for combining Solar + Storage, repowering aged PV systems and building more cost effective Microgrids.

"The SPOT helps solve some of the most pressing challenges in the commercial and utility scale sectors of the solar today, including the ability to cost effectively combine Solar and Storage, maintain the viability of aged PV plants and facilitate the deployment of more rugged and efficient Microgrids," explains Alencon Systems' President Hanan Fishman.

The Alencon SPOT family of products allows for the cost-effective integration of Solar + Storage on the DC side of the inverter by mapping the voltage from the PV panels to that of the charge/discharge voltage of the batteries. This approach allows new solar plus storage projects to be built more cost effectively while also letting existing PV plant owners add storage without having to change their grid interconnect agreement.

Alencon's SPOT is able effectively dc-couple Solar + Storage with its patented galvanic isolation approach to voltage manipulation of input voltage relative to output voltage. Earlier this year, the Alencon SPOT 1500 was deployed in the largest of its kind to date dc-coupled Solar + Storage project with a major energy company in the Southeastern United States.

SPOTS for PV Repowering

The Alencon SPOT family of products can be a great tool for improving the performance and the extending the life of existing PV plants. The SPOT can easily be retrofitted into an existing PV plant with a minimal amount of effort relative to the benefit. The SPOT is fully compatible on a "plug and play" basis with virtually any third-party inverter including those from such leading suppliers as SMA, GE, Solectria, Advanced Energy and Satcon, among others.

The SPOT can increase energy yield of aged solar plants suffering from PV panel mismatch due to any combination of factors including shading, soiling, module failure and replacement or uneven degradation. The SPOT is able to do so by injecting granular, string level MPPT into plants that previously were only served by a single MPPT from a central inverter.

The Alencon SPOT can be a particularly unique solution for facilitating the replacement of failed inverters, particularly in PV plants with 600-V strings, where 600-V inverters are no longer available as replacements. In such instances, the SPOT is a great solution for bridging the voltage gap created gap between 600-V PV strings and new 1000-V or 1500-V inverters.

SPOTS for Microgrids

The Alencon SPOT family of products can serve as vital appliance to the next generation of resilient microgrids which incorporate solar and other forms of alternative generation. In such applications, the SPOT provides a stable, configurable dc-bus voltage from PV panels of any voltage. This dc-bus voltage can then be distributed to any number of loads in the Microgrid.