Digitalising solar energy production
Discover how R-evolution deployed Xalt technologies to put data to work and increase efficiencies at the Archidona solar park
Challenge: Delivering operational data from different systems and vendors to a ‘single pane of glass' for site owners and operators.Technology Impact: Xalt empowers R-evolution’s solar park with integration and enterprise application capabilities across assets within the park. It acquires, structures and serves data across databases, API’s and SCADA systems into one mobile application.
Result: R-evolution can now see operational performance down to the smallest detail on their mobile devices. By doing so, R-evolution established a blueprint to gain operational insight into a solar park's key performance indicators.
Solar energy is a high-growth sector with a lower cost of entry in recent years: the price of solar panels has fallen 70 percent since 2017. Already today, solar power alone accounts for nearly 60 percent of the expected growth in renewables.
Major markets, such as the United States, China and the European Union are predicted to add an average of 125+ GW of capacity per year through 2025. Solar tech innovations will continue to drive down costs while improving efficiency, a trend forecasted to continue for the next decade. R-evolution will accelerate this trend by leveraging Hexagon’s solutions.
R-evolution’s photovoltaic (PV) project portfolio increases operational efficiency by creating and leveraging a Smart Digital Reality at every stage—from planning, designing, manufacturing, building, operating, and optimising solar energy production.
The solar park in Archidona, in the south of Spain near Malaga, relies on Hexagon’s broad range of digital solutions, including construction design tools, visualisation platforms and monitoring sensors and software. This combination creates a sustainable ecosystem that exemplifies the future of R-evolution.
Xalt is Hexagon’s technology platform that enables Hexagon’s solutions to work seamlessly together, leveraging all relevant data and delivering mission-critical intelligence at scale. It acquires data from various sources such as Online Weather services, power converters, solar cell status data, total energy production, prices from energy markets, emission data and estimated yields. That data is served to operators via its enterprise mobile application capabilities on mobile devices across the globe and 24/7. Low-Code configuration and extensibility are two key benefits of Xalt’s mobile capabilities. Within a few days, applications can be adapted, extended and shipped without any need for compiling and cumbersome deployment tasks. With the push of a button users across the globe will see updates through the Xalt cloud. For operational excellence and usability Xalt provides extensive styling capabilities.
The data acquisition is done with a highly configurable no-code business rules engine to solve enterprise-level integration challenges. Its WYSIWYG interface enables real-time debugging and error tracing. This central system of integration has eased adopting solutions such as SDx down to a few days instead of months of development work. Supplying templated pre-existing connectors for Hexagon solutions the power plant can additionally see benefits by e.g. leveraging Hexagon’s J5 Shift Operations Management.
For our Plants Archidona I and Archidona II we’ve listed the systems which data is combined and served at a glance via Xalt’s mobile capabilities:
Contains two NCU’s ( Network Control Units) and has total 144 Trackers
- NCU 1 has total 89 (TCU -> tracker control units)
- NCU 2 has total 55 TCU
- NetEco Inverters ( Provider Huwaii)
Contains two NCU’s ( Network Control Units) and has total 153 Trackers
- NCU 1 has total 49 (TCU -> tracker control units)
- NCU 2 has total 104 TCU
- ABB Inverters ( Provider Aurora Vision)
P4Q Sun trackers provides NCU and TCU for both Archidona I and Archidona II
NCU: Network Control Unit
- The Suntrack™ Network Control Unit, implements a gateway between the tracker network and the SCADA system that can monitor and control trackers on site. The NCU provides the capability of detecting a high wind and snow conditions with the support of peripheral sensors connected to the expander I/O unit or to the Suntrack™ RSU. Typical actuations include the NCU to determine if winds reach a preset threshold and sending trackers to safe position; and triggering snow alarms once a limit is exceeded. Alarms transmitted by the RSU or the Sensors inputs read by the I/O array are treated by the Network Controller Unit (NCU) through the cabled or wireless communication network
TCU : Tracker Control Unit:
- The Suntrack™ TCU is an integrated tracker control unit. All the required functionality is fixed in a sturdy enclosure that holds the power system, a motor driver, communication systems and a computing unit.
“R-evolution is owning and running the industrial renewable assets with all the challenges that come with it. The Xalt platform has become instrumental for us to have a single plane of glass for monitoring. Now we have an overview of otherwise disparate information systems. We see yield performance, spot price, weather forecasts, tracker data and inverter energy production. Xalt is the glue that makes our Smart Digital Reality solar park a reality.”
XALT scales and accelerates innovation through applied AI, IoT-empowered Hexagon sensors, enterprise-ready applications and mobile apps, data-integrations across systems and solutions.
Seamless connectivity anywhere in the network, across digital and physical boundaries including the Edge. By empowering Hexagon’s solutions to do more, Xalt is helping to future-proof customers’ technology – accelerating Hexagon’s mission to empower an autonomous sustainable future.
Click here to read more about how Hexagon’s solutions leverage Xalt