Solar power is able to provide many of the energy requirements of modern conveniences without the heavy carbon imprint of oil, coal or even bio fuels. A well managed solar farm is able to produce energy efficiently if it maximizes its capability of capturing the suns energy when it is available. QBotix is a company specializing in robotics and the QTS (News - Alert) (QBotix Tracking System) is designed to use robots to increase the efficiency of energy output in solar power plants.
Fixed solar panels are limited when it comes to harnessing the suns energy throughout the day. Peak levels are limited to certain times of the day with the remainder of the day offering lower than average energy production. A solar tracking system can increase the amount of energy it produces because the modules can be pointed towards the sun. The benefit of a solar tracking system is quickly outweighed by the high cost, installation and periodic maintenance associated with conventional tracking systems.
The QTS system has revolutionized solar tracking systems by using primary and secondary autonomous mobile robots to control a 300 kW of solar panels. The system requires the installation of a mounting system designed by QBotix without any individual motors. This is one of the downsides of conventional tracking system as it has many motors that are inefficient and require regular maintenance. The robots on the other hand travel on a track and are able to adjust each system to face the sun in succession with the optimum angle.
"Robots have proven themselves in extreme and diverse environments from the surface of Mars to battlefields and ocean depths. We're now deploying the innovations developed in robotics over the last several decades to manage solar power plants," said Wasiq Bokhari, CEO and founder of QBotix.
"Our main focus is to deliver a compelling combination of high performance, reliability, competitive cost, and unprecedented intelligence to our customers. Regardless of the choice of solar panels, inverters, foundations or other system components, the use of QTS will dramatically lower LCOE compared to all existing mounting or tracking systems."
QTS is universally compatible with all standard solar modules and the associated equipment as well as the foundation used to ground mounted installations. The system is easy to install because it ships pre- assembled and can be installed without the use of heavy machinery. The architecture doesn’t require tight installation tolerances and it can be deployed rapidly for systems ranging from 100 kW to multi MW’s with photovoltaic (PV) or concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) systems.
The potential of the QTS system can be fully appreciated in solar power plants in hostile environment with high heat and sandstorms that make the motors of traditional tracking system vulnerable.
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Edited by Brooke Neuman