Solar Tracking Water Pump Systems: optimal power yield

Solar Tracking Water Pump Systems - solar trackers installed with a solar water pump systems - help to significantly boost the performance of the system, reduce system costs and enhance the life cycle of system components.

Solar trackers and water pumping applications

Solar trackers are a particular type of mounting racks that rotate on axes to make the mounted panels continuously and directly face the sun during its daily movements. Solar modules can in this way track the sun continuously to achieve highest possible power production yields during any given day. Apart from application in solar farms, solar residential and industrial power systems, solar trackers can also be used with solar water pump systems. The significantly higher power yields solar trackers help to achieve, a solar water pump system’s power requirement complications can be significantly streamlined or likewise boost the pump system’s operational framework. Solar trackers enable operators to pump more water from with a small and inexpensive high-performance system during sunny days when water is needed for different uses.

Installation of solar trackers

The solar water pump is usually installed along with the solar tracker to help generate an extra 40% power or more from the photo-voltaic modules when compared to a fixed arrangement with standard mounting racks. The solar tracker, fitted with panels, increases energy tapping by following the sun to ensure maximum striking by the sunlight all day long. The electricity-driven solar tracker continuously and automatically adjusts the angle of the panels to ensure this is achieved.

Solar tracker advantages

Solar tracking cannot only boost the capacity of normal solar water pump systems, but also enhance the life cycle of the system’s battery. The depth of battery discharge is largely reduced. Peak loads in the morning and in the afternoon are mainly the highest demand during day times. They can be powered directly from the solar display to the load. This way, there is little battery cycling. The efficiency of the entire system is greatly enhanced. When loads are powered directly, the battery is bypassed. This way, the system efficiency can be increased to about 15% for every kWh used. For a hybrid system, fuel costs will be greatly reduced.

Performance benefits

Many solar water pumps stall due to overload during certain times when sunshine is hitting directly, causing them to run at high speeds. As a result, they are affected in their ability to perform efficiently at times when the sun is at a low angle in the afternoon and morning hours. The solar array output will be less than 50% at times during which a centrifugal pump could produce inadequate centrifugal force to attain the anticipated lift. When a pump runs at high speed for a whole day, solar trackers can help increase the water pumping yield during each day. The water pump can start to work early and run for long hours. The water yield is increased as a result. Pumping water from limited water sources is greatly enhanced because of the long pumping runs. Also, long-distance pumping and deep-well pumping which require significantly more power and stronger pumps, benefit from the more in available (yielded) power.

Solar tracker cost calculations

Using a solar tracker, the overall system costs are greatly reduced as less solar PV modules and only a comparably low-power pump is needed to pump an equal volume of water on a daily basis. Pipe costs are also reduced as a result of a reduced peak flow. Pipe friction is less, thus allowing the use of small pipes hence reducing cost on big pipes. However, solar trackers are not a cheap component and only make sense for large and/ or high-demand solar water pumping applications.
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