At this year’s European Photovoltaic Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition (EU PVSEC) in Frankfurt, SMA Solar Technology AG (SMA) will showcase their intelligent, comprehensive energy management solutions that were designed specifically to meet the world’s future power supply needs. The worldwide leading inverter manufacturer’s main message is that their innovative technologies are the key to a successful energy transition. They’ll be presenting the SMA Smart Home, which intelligently controls household appliances and includes the soon-to-be-launched Sunny Boy 5000 Smart Energy with integrated storage function. Alongside system solutions for established photovoltaic markets, SMA is also focusing on new less-developed markets. For the mid to large system segment, the company has developed a pioneering solar diesel hybrid system: In sunny regions without a grid connection, solar power has already proven itself to be much more economical than electricity from conventional diesel generators.
Intelligent energy management with the SMA Smart Home
“Ensuring that self-consumption is as high as possible is the key to a decentralized energy supply from renewable sources. To achieve this, you need intelligent energy management that not only provides comprehensive analysis, forecasts, information and automated control of the energy consumption, but that also includes a decentralized storage system. And we’ve already developed the perfect solution: the SMA Smart Home,” says SMA Chief Technology Officer Roland Grebe. The most interesting development here is SMA’s soon-to-be-launched Sunny Boy 5000 Smart Energy. It is the first-ever device to combine a full-fledged modern PV inverter and a storage system in a compact, wall-mountable enclosure. The Sunny Boy 5000 Smart Energy raises the self-consumption rate nearly all year round and by up to 50 percent on yearly average. A further increase in self-consumption is made possible when it is combined with the successful Sunny Home Manager, which intelligently controls household appliances using amongst others location-specific yield forecasts.
Product innovations lower system costs
Trade fair visitors can also look forward to new products in the central inverter segment and for monitoring and controlling PV power plants. SMA’s new and improved Sunny Central 900CP XT is a high-performance central inverter for the megawatt range. Its higher performance means that the system technology costs are significantly less than those of the previous model. Thanks to its wide input voltage range and comprehensive grid management functions, the new Sunny Central is also ideally equipped for global use with all kinds of modules. The brand new SMA Power Plant Controller offers smart and flexible solutions for managing PV farms. It is suitable for all megawatt PV power plants and controls system architectures with the Sunny Central and with the Sunny Tripower. The SMA Cluster Controller ensures the perfect integration of the Sunny Tripower inverter in the overriding SMA Plant Control architecture. With intelligent algorithms and especially fast implementation of control commands, it ensures the highest possible system availability at all times.
When it comes to residential PV rooftop systems, the new “small” Sunny Tripower helps to lower installation costs. The devices with an output of between 5 kVA and 9 kVA complete the Sunny Tripower product range at the lower end. They come with integrated grid management functions and enable a reactive power supply. For inverters in the medium power range, SMA is proud to present their new Power Control module for easily controlling the inverter, as well as the Webconnect interface that provides free access to the Sunny Portal for simple online monitoring of small PV plants with up to four inverters. The new Sunny Tripower features Webconnect for the first time.
Solar diesel hybrid systems for new markets
For energy-intensive industrial plants, hotels and hospitals in sunny regions without a grid connection, SMA has developed solar diesel hybrid solutions. The key component of these systems is the SMA Fuel Save Controller, which ensures demand-oriented control of the PV feed-in. “There is a lot of potential for solar diesel hybrid systems, particularly in countries facing increasing energy demand due to growth. Such countries are looking for solutions that provide economical access to electricity,” says Grebe. In many countries in the regions of South America, the Middle East, Asia/Pacific and Africa, electricity so far is often supplied via diesel generators, although solar energy is the far more economical alternative. “Our intelligent system technology allows photovoltaics to be integrated perfectly into existing diesel networks. A solar diesel hybrid system of this kind can reduce fuel consumption considerably and produce electricity far more cheaply and effectively than simple combustion engines,” says Roland Grebe about the innovative technology. SMA has over 20 years of experience with hybrid systems, which provides an exceptional basis for the development of new hybrid technologies and enables them to deliver expertly engineered solutions.
Visitors to the PVSEC can learn more about SMA’s many innovations at the SMA booth in hall 3.1, booth H6.
The SMA Group generated sales of €1.7 billion in 2011 and is the global market leader for solar inverters, a key component of all PV plants. It is headquartered in Niestetal, near Kassel, Germany, and is represented in 20 countries on four continents. The corporate group employs more than 5 500 people worldwide, plus a number of temporary employees that varies on a seasonal basis. SMA’s broad product portfolio includes a compatible inverter for every type of module on the market and for all PV plant sizes. The product range includes inverters both for grid-connected PV plants and for off-grid systems. SMA is therefore able to provide ideal technical inverter solutions for all plant sizes and types. Since 2008, the Group’s parent company, SMA Solar Technology AG, has been listed on the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (S92) and also in the TecDAX index. In recent years, SMA has received numerous awards for excellence as an employer and in 2011 and 2012 achieved first place in the nationwide Great Place to Work® competition.
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