Measuring campaign „Zukunftskraftwerk PV“ (PV Power Plant of the Future) in TestLab Power Electronics

The central activity of TestLab Power Electronics is the measurement and characterization of electronic power feed units for industrial customers. The spectrum ranges from solar inverters over battery converters to cogeneration units. Voltage drop tests, feed guideline reviews or efficiency degree measurements represent typical application scenarios. In meetings with customers, our test engineers discuss individual requests and needs and find tailor-made solutions. To retain such a degree of versatility and flexibility, our personnel must be expertly trained, and we must regularly look beyond our own nose.

© Fraunhofer ISE
Delivery of the cogeneration unit for measurement.
Lastbank und BHKW
© Fraunhofer ISE
Load bank and cogeneration unit with cable connection to TestLab Power Electronics.
Zentrale Steuerung
© Fraunhofer ISE
Central control and registration of the measuring data.

Measurements for publicly supported research projects take place regularly in the facilities of TestLab Power Electronics. Such complex measuring orders pose new challenges for our test engineers, enabling them to find creative, unique solutions for customer requests in every-day business.

In November of 2017, a three-week measuring campaign was carried out as part of the research project “Power plant of the future PV”. For this purpose, two modified central inverters of the megawatt category were operated in parallel. The DC supply of the two large inverters was ensured through the interplay of our megawatt solar simulator with our new, versatile AC/DC simulator. Controlling developed specifically for this purpose helped to achieve that the devices feed into the public power grid but are also able to form an isolated grid in case of a fault. The combination of the photovoltaics inverters with a cogeneration unit and a load bank as consumer creates a micro grid which is maintained by the inverters. The new controlling developed at the Fraunhofer ISE can also withstand sudden changes between grid connection and stand-alone operation.

The set-up of this system with the four main components load bank, cogeneration unit generator and two central inverters presented a great challenge for our laboratory team. An elaborate measuring system made from Dewetron high-performance measuring devices was installed in order to be able to monitor all devices. The in-depth participation of TestLab Power Electronics test engineers in these activities highlights that our expertise is especially distinct when it comes to complicated measuring and development tasks in addition to standard measurements.

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