SEIPS Case Study: Honduras Commercial Solar PV System Commissioning
In the winter of 2015 SEI Professional Services (SEIPS) performed the commissioning of a 3.03 MW grid-tied, roof-mounted PV power plant on a commercial bottling facility in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. This project is the largest roof-mounted PV system in Latin America at the time of installation.
A team of two SEIPS technicians worked for 7 days alongside staff from local EPC Smart Solar and an inverter manufacturer technician to verify system performance and bring it online in successful fashion.
The system was divided into 4 subsystems comprising of a total of 548 strings and 98 inverters. 11,636 PV modules were placed on all roof aspects (north, south, east and west) to maximize the available roof top space. Being near the equator meant that all modules, regardless of orientation, would be productive and cost effective throughout the year.
The SEIPS team identified system anomalies to be corrected on site before start-up, made valuable recommendations on best practices that should be implemented in upcoming projects, and provided Smart Solar with a final punch-list. Additionally, short technical trainings were given to Smart Solar staff on understanding the practicalities of Equipment Grounding and System Ground, understanding NEC 2014 Rapid Shutdown requirements, and overall best practices of PV system installation.
A representative from SMA (the inverter manufacturer) assisted the team, providing invaluable redundant support during what was a complex and lengthy process.
The end result is a professionally commissioned asset that the client can now use to offset it’s most critical power needs. Overall the owners of the facility expect a 65% offset of their net grid energy usage. SEIPS is proud to have supported SEI alumni at Smart Solar and to bring such an important project online.