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Open AccessArticle

New Omnidirectional Sensor Based on Open-Source Software and Hardware for Tracking and Backtracking of Dual-Axis Solar Trackers in Photovoltaic Plants

1
Department of Mechanics, Campus of Rabanales, University of Cordoba, 14071 Cordoba, Spain
2
Department of Electrical Engineering and Automatics, Campus of Rabanales, University of Cordoba, 14071 Cordoba, Spain
3
Department of Applied Physics, Radiology and Physical Medicine, Campus of Rabanales, University of Cordoba, 14071 Cordoba, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2021, 21(3), 726; https://doi.org/10.3390/s21030726
Received: 1 January 2021 / Revised: 15 January 2021 / Accepted: 19 January 2021 / Published: 21 January 2021
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
In this work, an omnidirectional sensor that enables identification of the direction of the celestial sphere with maximum solar irradiance is presented. The sensor, based on instantaneous measurements, functions as a position server for dual-axis solar trackers in photovoltaic plants. The proposed device has been developed with free software and hardware, which makes it a pioneering solution because it is open and accessible as well as capable of being improved by the scientific community, thereby contributing to the rapid advancement of technology. In addition, the device includes an algorithm developed ex professo that makes it possible to predetermine the regions of the celestial sphere for which, according to the geometric characteristics of the PV plant, there would be shading between the panels. In this way, solar trackers do not have to locate the Sun’s position at all times according to astronomical models, while taking into account factors such as shadows or cloudiness that also affect levels of incident irradiance on solar collectors. Therefore, with this device, it is possible to provide photovoltaic plants with dual-axis solar tracking with a low-cost device that helps to optimise the trajectory of the trackers and, consequently, their radiative capture and energy production. View Full-Text
Keywords: free and open-source hardware (FOSH); sun position sensor; omnidirectional sensor; solar trackers; PV plants; backtracking free and open-source hardware (FOSH); sun position sensor; omnidirectional sensor; solar trackers; PV plants; backtracking
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gómez-Uceda, F.J.; Ramirez-Faz, J.; Varo-Martinez, M.; Fernández-Ahumada, L.M. New Omnidirectional Sensor Based on Open-Source Software and Hardware for Tracking and Backtracking of Dual-Axis Solar Trackers in Photovoltaic Plants. Sensors 2021, 21, 726. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21030726

AMA Style

Gómez-Uceda FJ, Ramirez-Faz J, Varo-Martinez M, Fernández-Ahumada LM. New Omnidirectional Sensor Based on Open-Source Software and Hardware for Tracking and Backtracking of Dual-Axis Solar Trackers in Photovoltaic Plants. Sensors. 2021; 21(3):726. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21030726

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gómez-Uceda, Francisco J.; Ramirez-Faz, José; Varo-Martinez, Marta; Fernández-Ahumada, Luis M. 2021. "New Omnidirectional Sensor Based on Open-Source Software and Hardware for Tracking and Backtracking of Dual-Axis Solar Trackers in Photovoltaic Plants" Sensors 21, no. 3: 726. https://doi.org/10.3390/s21030726

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