Current Location

DKASC, Alice Springs

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Manufacturer SunPower
Array Rating 5.236kW
PV Technology mono-Si
Array Structure Fixed: Ground Mount
Installed 2011

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Current Output

Fixed tilt, ground mounted array consisting of SunPower E19 238W 19.3% efficient Monocrystalline silicon modules utilising SunPower’s “Maxeon” cell technology (all back-contact on solid copper foundation).

SunPower back-contact monocrystalline panels are different to standard technology PV cells. They incorporate certain design characteristics that lead to high efficiency performance. Because they convert sunlight with a greater efficiency, fewer modules are needed for the same given output.

The core benefits of SunPower cell technology are superior performance in high temperatures, positive tolerance so the stated power on the module is the minimum that can be expected, high performance in low light and overcast conditions as verified by Photon magazine (in which SunPower modules took out the top three positions), “n-type” silicon to avoid initial power degradation when first exposed to sunlight, built in shade tolerance and inclusion of anti reflective glass to maximise the energy from the sunlight received.

SunPower modules also offer class leading reliability as verified by Fraunhofer Institute PVDI Test and the Atlas 25+ testing programs backed up with a combined 25 year product and power warranty.

SunPower is a global, NASDAQ listed corporation, headquartered in Silicon Valley, USA which designs and manufactures high-efficiency solar panels. SunPower is majority owned by Total S.A,. who are a French multinational energy company with global rank of 23 in Forbes Magazine’s Global 2000 World’s Biggest Companies 2013. SunPower is a vertically integrated company involved in the entire value chain from cell manufacture through to developing and installing utility and commercial scale projects, as well as distributing to the residential market through a worldwide network of some 1500+ partners.

Array Rating 5.236kW
Panel Rating 238W
Number Of Panels 22
Panel Type SunPower SPR-238-WHT-D
Array Area 27.4 m²
Type Of Tracker N/A
Inverter Size / Type 6 kW, SMA SMC 6000A
Installation Completed Wed, 1 Jun 2011
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. 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



>  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: What are the usual efficiencies of solar PV cells and modules today?

A: A standard crystalline silicon module would be expected to achieve an efficiency (conversion of sunlight to electrical energy) of at least 15%, with 18%+ an impressive result and low- to mid-20%s achievable by the best performers. Thin film module efficiencies are closer to 8-15%. Tracking systems can improve the efficiency of crystalline PV systems to well over 20% and concentrating technologies, over 30%. On a separate note, "cell" efficiencies of the above photovoltaic varieties are higher than their corresponding "module" efficiencies by several percentage points because of the energy losses introduced by the glass, framing and other features of modules which are not part of pure (unassembled) cells.