Project: Reducing the photovoltaic operation and maintenance (O&M) costs through an advanced online platform

Acronym ROM-PV (Reference Number: JTC-2_2019_026)
Duration 12/12/2019 - 31/08/2023
Project Topic A challenge in the scope of facilitating further the uptake of photovoltaic (PV) technology is the reduction of levelised cost of energy (LCOE) by increasing the lifetime output, quality and sustainability as targeted by the SET-Plan. This can be achieved by improving the lifetime energy yield and operation and maintenance (O&M) costs through online data-driven and statistical algorithms that will enable the analysis of measurements collected from constant monitoring of PV plants. In this sense, a main challenge for ensuring quality of PV power plant operation is to safeguard reliability and optimum performance by detecting, classifying and accurately quantifying performance losses and failures. The ROM-PV project has been initiated to overcome these challenges by developing and commercialising a product that will enable preventive and predictive maintenance and ensure optimal PV plant performance while reducing costs associated to O&M. This will be achieved through the development of a cloud-based solution that will host innovative algorithms able to a) ensure data quality and b) allow failure and performance loss diagnosis (open- and short-circuit failures, inverter and bypass diode faults, shading, degradation, soiling, etc.) without disrupting the normal operation of the PV plant. The methodology will be primarily based on real-time analysis of measurement data, machine learning and statistical analysis and will be verified experimentally against field measurements from existing PV systems. The project is expected to have significant impact on reducing the LCOE, by increasing the lifetime output, quality and sustainability as targeted by the SET-Plan. This can be achieved by predicting and accurately detecting faults (i.e. PID, shading, faulty inverter, etc.), performing preventive maintenance and cleaning strategies. Therefore, combining the preventive and predictive maintenance aspects of this project will impact positively the way O&M providers perform their services, making them more efficient, more cost effective but will also have a positive impact on plant performance. Finally, this is an industry driven project which combines the research expertise of two well reputed research groups, the PV Lab of the University of Cyprus (UCY) and the CEAEMA of the University of Jaén (UJA) with the market experience of a global organization (Alectris Hellas IKE – industrial partner) that delivers assets care innovation for the global solar industry since 2012.
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Project partner

Number Name Role Country
1 University of Cyprus PV Technology Laboratory, FOSS Research Centre for Sustainable Energy Coordinator Cyprus
2 University of Jaén Centre for Advanced Studies in Energy and Environment (CEAEMA), IDEA Solar Research Group, Electronics and Automation Department Partner Spain
3 Alectris Hellas IKE Partner Greece