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Configuration of a photovoltaic (PV) power generator has influence on the operation of the generator, especially if it is prone to partial shading. In this paper, the mismatch losses and the power losses due to failure in tracking of the global maximum power point of a long string of 18 series-connected PV modules and three short strings of six series-connected PV modules connected in parallel are investigated under different partial shading conditions by using a MATLAB Simulink simulation model. The generators with parallel-connected short strings are studied in case when they have the same operating voltage and when they operate as separate strings. The results show that long series connection of modules and parallel connections of strings via a single inverter to the electrical grid should be minimized to avoid losses in case of partial shading conditions. Under partial shading conditions, short strings operating separately have the lowest power losses.
Date of Publication: March 2012