Solar Tracking Systems are a special form of mounting structures and designed to maximize the yield of the solar PV system by following the course of the sun. By following the course of the sun, the solar panel will collect energy for the longest period of the day.
As the position of the sun is always changing, the only way to get maximum yield out of your pv system is to control the position of the solar panels in accordance with the motion of the sun.
These tracking systems collect significantly more sun radiation compared to solar panels that are installed under a fixed angle.
Different types if Solar Tracking Systems
There are two different types of mounted structures for tracking systems, that are:
One-axis tracking systems
The one-axis trackers or single-axis trackers are designed to track the sun movement from the east to the west
Two-axis tracking systems
The two-axis systems track the sun’s daily and follow the seasonal course. Two-axis tracking systems are overwhelmingly used with PV concentrator systems (CPV).
Solar Tracking Systems and concentrated photovoltaic (CPV)
Concentrated photovoltaic systems work with optics and small high efficiency solar cells. These optics work best when they’re exposed to direct sunlight. For that reason the lenses need to be aimed straight at the sun, and to do so, solar tracking systems are used.
Solar Tracking Systems guarantee that the lenses are always aimed at the optimal angle towards the sun, ensuring the maximum performance.
Solar tracking system using microcontroller
The more advanced hardware are the solar tracking system using micro controller.
The pre programmed micro controllers have a simple software which measures the intensity of the insulation with the use of a Pyranometer.
“A Pyranometer is used to measure the solar insulation reaching the surface and is designed to measure the solar radiation flux density (W/m2) from a field of view of 180 degrees” (Wikipedia definition).
Nowadays some solar tracking systems also use GPS for accurate positioning of the solar panels towards the sun