Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Exeltech Knows Inverters

Good People at Exeltech,
I have a question about grid-tie inverters. When the inverter is syncronizing with grid voltage and phase, how is the voltage chosen? Does the inverter match the voltage of the grid, or is it higher? If it's higher, how much higher and what is the most efficient voltage above grid voltage? I want to ensure that my household loads use 100% of my solar panel output first before using any grid power.

Hello Dave,
Grid-tie inverters will match your line voltage, plus a tiny bit more (on the order of a few thousandths of a volt) --  and will go only as high as necessary to output the available power from the solar modules.  There isn't a "most efficient voltage above the grid" per se.
A grid-tie inverter connected on your side of the utility meter will always contribute to your home loads first.  If you're using more power than the inverter is generating, you'll be consuming 100% of the inverter power first, with the balance coming from the utility company.  For example, let's say the inverter is generating 1,500 watts .. and you've got loads in the home consuming 1,600 watts.  The inverter power will be totally used by your home needs .. and you'll be buying the 100 watt difference from the power company.
Hope this helps.
Dan Lepinski
Senior Engineer
7317 Jack Newell Blvd. North
Fort Worth, Texas 76118
(817) 595-4969 (Voice)
(817) 595-1290 (FAX)
(800) 886-4683 (Toll-free)


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