Current Location

DKASC, Alice Springs

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Manufacturer Calyxo
Array Rating 5.4kW
PV Technology CdTe
Array Structure Fixed: Ground Mount
Installed 2010

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Current Output

Cadmium Telluride thin-film array, fixed ground-mount.

Cadmium Telluride (CdTe) replaces silicon as the active photovoltaic material in these modules. The modules are manufactured in an innovative production process where the active photovoltaic layer is deposited under atmospheric pressure.

CdTe modules have a lower efficiency compared to crystalline silicon modules, and as a result a greater number of modules are required for a given output. However, the simpler production process of CdTe modules results in lower module costs compared to crystalline silicon modules.

These PV modules are expected to perform well in the climate of Alice Springs due to the material characteristics of CdTe.

Calyxo is a German based manufacturer of photovoltaic modules.

The above technology description has been supplied by the manufacturer. The Desert Knowledge Australia Solar Centre is pleased to provide a platform for information sharing while not endorsing specific claims made about technologies installed at the site.

Array Rating 5.4kW
Number Of Panels 108
Panel Type CX-50
Array Area 77.76 m²
Type Of Tracker N/A
Inverter Size / Type 6kW, SMA SMC 6000A
Installation Completed Mon, 1 Mar 2010
Array Tilt/Azimuth Tilt = 20, Azi = 0 (Solar North)

Notes on the Data

  1. System Disconnection for Cabling Works

    All arrays at the Solar Centre were disconnected from approximately 2.00pm to 3.00pm on Monday, 9 July 2018 in preparation for the cable between the main switchboard and distribution board being upgraded. Array sites #23-38 shall remain disconnected while the main feeder cable to these sites is replaced in the coming days.


    Mon, 9 Jul 2018

  2. System Outage at Australia Day Long Weekend

    A breaker tripped at around 12.30pm on Friday, 26 January, likely due to high generation levels reached at this peak time on this high irradiance day. Connection was restored after the Australia Day long weekend at around 11.30am on Monday, 29 January but shortly tripped again.

    UPDATE 26-02-2018. The cause of this reoccurring issue has been identified and will be rectified. The solution requires the upgrading of a key distribution cable. This should be completed in the coming months.


    Fri, 26 Jan 2018

  3. Connection Restored After Christmas/NY Period

    Arrays have been re-connected following the outage that disconnected multiple sites from Christmas day 2017. The outage is believed to have been triggered by the tripping of two circuit breakers in separate distribution boards, making the diagnosis initially elusive. The ability of the common circuit shared by these arrays to keep abreast with increasingly high current demands as new arrays are installed and generation conditions are high is presently being addressed. For the same reason, intermittent outages persisted in the summer of early 2018.


    Fri, 19 Jan 2018

  4. System Outage at Christmas/NY Period

    A system outage was caused by a circuit breaker trip at approximately 2pm on a high generation day shortly after installation of a new array at the DKA Solar Centre. The outage commenced on 25 December continuing into the new year and is being addressed.


    Mon, 25 Dec 2017

  5. System Outage for New Array Connection

    Sites 23 through to 37 experienced an outage today from 11:10 to 11:50. The outage was due to the local distribution board being temporarily being taken offline to allow for the connection of a new PV system.  


    Wed, 20 Dec 2017

  6. Monitoring Interruption for UPS Battery Replacement

    The disconnection and re-connection of the solar arrays and weather station equipment while a new site connection was being established prompted the already flattening UPS batteries which power the site’s energy meters to fail and require immediate replacement. Data recording was affected from approximately 2.30pm ACST, Monday 10 July to 4.00pm, Wednesday 12 July.

    Affects weather data for DKASC, Alice Springs


    Wed, 12 Jul 2017

  7. Partial System Outage

    One of the major switchboards at the DKASC lost power yesterday 01/12/2016 at ~11:00 am. This isolated and shutdown array sites 23 through to 37 inclusive. The switchboard was re-energised at ~16:30 today (02/12/2016) and is again operating normally. Data for this period for these sites is lost.


    Fri, 2 Dec 2016



>  Answer to Spotlight Question

Onsite at the DKA Solar Centre in Alice Springs are a series of quiz-like Spotlight Questions at each array. Visit the centre and scan the QR code at each sign to test your knowledge – and check your answer here!

Q: How well do Cadmium Telluride modules perform compared to other thin film modules? (Hint: Download and compare the real performance data on this website!)

A: CdTe modules tend to be slightly more efficient than amorphous silicon modules but slightly less than CIGS or CIS types. While amorphous silicon is the oldest of the thin film family, CdTe modules have seen a much wider commercial track record and demonstrated environmental sustainability than CIGS or CIS, but the constant research, development and continuous improvement of photovoltaic products generates new performance figures and innovations that shift the competitive landscape.