With the dramatic drop in hardware costs over the last decade, particularly for photovoltaic modules, the relative costs for Operations & Maintenance activities has increased significantly. The PV Operations & Management (PV O&M) project focuses on reducing these costs through development and subsequent application of methodologies to facilitate analysis and pattern identification of critical activities.
Currently, researchers are focused on understanding the impact of weather activities on PV systems, identification of common failures modes, and evaluation of associated cost impacts. The research team also engages in synergistic discussions focused on standardizing data terminology and database practices.
Analytical activities are informed by Sandia National Laboratories’ PV Reliability, Operations & Management (PVROM) database, which contains O&M records for over 800 sites, and captures five distinct O&M data collection practices across both distributed generation and utility-scale systems (see image above).
Methodological details are open-source, and project outcomes are shared at research and industry-oriented conferences. Representative publications include: