Identifying Issues on Installed Photovoltaic Systems Using Thermal Imagery
by Fred Brooks, CEM, CEA, CEO of Pacific Panel Cleaners
Tuesday, June 9, 2020 | 3:00-4:00pm (EDT)
Photovoltaic systems are a great renewable energy resource and they need to be inspected and maintained regularly. Inspection of the photovoltaic modules with a thermal imager is critical to identify any problems. Inspection of the balance of system ensures the items are installed properly.
If there are issues in the modules or on the balance of system this can cause a loss of energy which is a direct parallel to a loss in money. If there is a problem that goes undetected and is left in the system, it can lead to a fire which is very dangerous and is also very costly. The use of the thermal imagery with the other data collected on a site is an invaluable tool to determining the health of the installed photovoltaic system. What are we able to see? How can we tell if this is a real issue or not? What are some of the causes for the issues we can find? What can be done with some of the issues that are found? What are the conditions for conducting a proper thermal scan with true results? This tool can identify the location of microinverters or optimizers that are out and help you find them, and that is invaluable when the map is wrong.
Fred served 8 and half years in the United States Navy in the Engineering Department. Completed a BS degree in Environmental Science at HPU while taking photovoltaic engineering courses. Started working in the photovoltaic industry in 2006 and started the first solar cleaning and maintenance company in Hawaii in 2009. Fred has earned his Certified Energy Manager (CEM), Certified Energy Auditor (CEA) and Level II Thermographer Certification. Has been a leader in the Photovoltaic Maintenance Industry since 2009. He has spoken at several conferences and published papers on identifying issues on installed photovoltaic systems using thermal imagery and on good photovoltaic maintenance practices and the value in a good monitoring system for your photovoltaic system.
Fred is a true consumer advocate and passionate about helping clients protect their solar investments. He has a true passion for the energy field and the environment and wants to see and share the natural beauty of the world continue to shine for his daughters and generations to come.