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Grid-Connected Solar Micro Inverter Reference Design

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A fully digitally controlled grid-connected solar micro inverter reference design with an advanced, high-efficiency topology is being offered by Microchip Technology. The solar power industry is evolving to meet the requirements of a changing landscape, as it moves from a cottage industry to mass production. Solar design engineers are being challenged to optimize energy harvesting, reduce installation costs, and improve system reliability and efficiency while standardizing their designs. This reference design enables them to achieve these goals through digital power conversion techniques, supported by the features of Microchip’s dsPIC33F ‘GS’ series of digital-power Digital Signal Controllers (DSCs). The reference design connects to any standard solar panel and converts the panel’s DC output into AC power, which can then be fed into the public power grid. In a real-world application, multiple units can be connected together to achieve the desired power output.

Additional features of Microchip’s Grid-Connected Solar Micro Inverter Reference Design include a peak efficiency of 95%, a power factor of >0.95 and an output Current THD <3%. It achieves a maximum power point tracking of 99.5% and has a nighttime power consumption of less than 1W. It supports system islanding to detect grid failure and has full digital control.

This reference design works with any photovoltaic (PV) panel that supplies a maximum 220 watts output, and it comes in two versions supporting either 110V or 220V power grids. Both versions of this reference design are implemented using a single dsPIC33F ‘GS’ digital-power DSC, which provides fully digital control of the power-conversion and system-management functions. Complete documentation, including software, schematics and application note, can be downloaded for free today from Microchip’s Web site at http://www.microchip.com/get/PLHH. 

Microchip Technology, Chandler, AZ. 888-624-7435. [www.microchip.com].