PV Systems

Photovoltaic Systems Research Activities of the Georgia Tech UCEP

As the cost of PV devices continues to decrease, advances in other PV system components become increasingly important to continue the overall downward trend in the cost of PV-produced electricity. The University Center of Excellence for Photovoltaic Research and Education (UCEP) has therefore begun to examine several aspects of PV systems to help meet this challenge.

Current activities of the Center in this area include:

  • Monitoring of the Georgia Tech Aquatic Center Photovoltaic Array and the Georgia Tech SAC Canopy AC array in order to:
    • Evaluate design practices used in these systems
    • Compare AC and DC array configurations
    • Validate and improve upon PV systems computer modeling tools
  • Comparisons of PV system modeling programs to determine areas of need
  • Study of the role PV might play in utility power systems
  • Study of PV-related power electronics in order to:
    • Aid in the development of module-integrated power electronics
    • Fully understand interactions between PV and utility systems and resolve related
      problems (i.e. islanding)
    • Improve PV battery charging techniques and converters
  • Promote public awareness of PV technology and its capabilities.

Tech’s PV systems group is working to establish ties with industry and other research centers. These groups financially support Tech’s PV systems research and also assist in determining research directions. In return, they directly benefit from the research done by the PV systems group.