Solar Market Outlook in Canada
The forecast is bright for the future of the solar energy sector in Canada. In particular, the year 2020 was a promising one for the Canadian solar energy market and it has built a solid foundation for more solar growth in 2021.
The Canadian Renewable Energy Association released a statement citing that the renewable energy market in Canada – not just solar – saw significant expansion in 2020 and it is looking to build on that momentum for 2021 moving forward. This was impressive considering the challenges that faced them in 2020 given the pandemic. For 2020, the total solar capacity reached 2,000 MW, giving Canada sufficient energy storage.
The consistent growth in the solar market is fueled by the increased corporate demand and the policies put in place by the government. Even with the disruptions of 2020, Canada was able to generate 70 MW of solar PV capacity. The three levels of government in Canada will work together to reduce carbon emissions and to facilitate growth in solar PV capacity.
Wind and solar combine to form the largest share in Canada’s renewable energy sector in terms of power generation.
Solar Energy Equipment Supply Capacity in Canada
Canada is one of the leaders in the manufacture of solar equipment. However, there are more available global and online suppliers to cope with the demand for solar components and accessories.
Top Major Seaports & Logistics in Canada
There are more than 500 seaport facilities in Canada. However, the major seaports serving trade and logistics activity include
- Port of Vancouver,
- Port of Halifax,
- Port of Montreal,
- Port of Prince Rupert,
- Port of St. John.
When installing a solar panel system, you have to be familiar with the electric breakers and how it works with a solar PV system to avoid future electric problems. The electric breaker is one of the main components of a solar power system that provides safety mechanisms. If ever the electrical wiring of your system has too much current flowing through it, these breakers can easily cut the power until your solar installer can fix the system’s problem.
For today’s article, we will discuss electric breakers and their function in solar photovoltaic systems.
What is an Electric Breaker?
An electric or circuit breaker is an electrical switch designed to protect electrical circuits from damage caused by overloading of current or a short circuit. The basic function of an electric breaker is to prevent the current flow once protective relays detect a fault in the system.
Although it is frequently interchanged with a fuse, which is the simplest Over Current Protection device (OCPD) in electrical circuits, a circuit breaker, is a much-evolved type of device that interrupts the current flow. The main difference between the two is electric breaker is resettable and the fuse is not. The fuse sacrifices itself while protecting the system to overheat, while the circuit breaker can withstand hundreds and thousands of operations. Another difference is that electric breakers are used with relatively higher currents.
Components of Circuit Breaker
A circuit breaker system is composed of three parts. These three components are the sensing system, relay, and the combination of contacts and the contact actuator. A sensing system is responsible for detecting an overload situation, while a relay is responsible for transferring the information to the switching arrangement, and the combination of contacts and the contact actuator. This electric arrangement is usually observed in power transmission and distribution networks dealing with very high currents, voltages, and powers.
Circuit Breakers Calculation in Solar Panel Systems
When connecting circuit breakers to the PV system, you have to follow the recommended calculations to avoid future problems and damage to the entire system. The recommendations for using overcurrent protection devices including circuit breakers in solar modules against overloading conditions are given in IEC 60269-6 (volume 6 of IEC 60269-6) and also UL 248-19.
For circuit breakers, IEC recommends a 20% and 25% margin in voltage and overload current. Most of the time, the ratings are specified by the solar manufacturers at given ambient conditions. If the temperatures exceed this given value, derating must be applied according to the manufacturer’s specifications.
When it comes to breaker sizes for solar panels, NEC requires the breakers to be sized at 125% of the inverter’s rated output. So a 7680W inverter that outputs 240V, outputs 32A (7680W ÷ 240V = 32A). That requires a 40A breaker (32A x 125% = 40A).
If you owned a solar panel system at home, you have to understand how circuit breakers work to prevent catching fires at home. These devices are one of the major components of the PV solar system as they protect the system wiring from getting too hot and accidentally catch fire if short circuits occurred. Thus, understanding the breaker itself and its proper calculations in the PV system should be done.