Solar Market Outlook in Macao
The energy consumption of Macao is tremendously high and this is expected to continue its upward trend given the increasing number of large buildings. The lack of proper policies in building energy efficiency is contributing to the ineffective implementation of measures to improve building energy efficiency.
While Macao is not among the leaders in Asia when it comes to solar power generation, the private sector has stepped up to provide an alternative source. In Macao, a company known as Melco, has collaborated with local SMEs in the development of the largest solar power plant in Macao. The project installed more than 18,000 solar PV panels spanning a total of nearly 30,000 square meters of rooftop space. This project is capable of producing up to 7.7 million kWh of energy on an annual basis (or equivalent to the energy consumption of 1,500 residents in a year).
Other private institutions have followed suit and constructed their own renewable energy systems, especially focusing on solar and wind sources. The government of Macao is also looking to amend its existing policies to provide incentives to those who are willing to invest in solar energy.
Solar Energy Equipment Supply Capacity in Macao
You can find plenty of Macanese suppliers and manufacturers of solar power equipment. It is also possible to find global and online suppliers of solar power equipment to meet your desired capacity.
Top 8 Major Seaports & Logistics in Macao
Macao relies heavily on its ports for its logistics and trade activities. When investing in solar power equipment, you can expect supplies to be transported via the main port in the island – the Port of Macao.
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.