From pv magazine Global
The Spanish companies Solartia and IED — experts in energy and electronics, respectively — have launched Arca, an autonomous solar power generator described as a robust and low-maintenance system that aims to alleviate energy poverty.
The system integrates solar panels, power electronics, energy storage and prepayment in a compact, robust and simple way, which allows it to be able to supply energy permanently anywhere in the world, according to the manufacturer. The solution is also designed to be installed in any location without qualified personnel.
Arca Lite has a rated installed power of 490 Wp, and Arca Plus of 980 Wp. The voltage range is 30-50 V and 60-100 V, respectively.
The system also features encapsulated electronics, which are claimed to allow the device to withstand up to 100% relative humidity, as well as LiFePO4 batteries. A charge and discharge algorithm prevents overcharging and deep discharging of the system, offering between 3,000 and 6,000 cycles at 80% depth of discharge (DoD).
The system can assess the state of the battery in terms of the deterioration of its storage capacity and can thus carry out predictive maintenance, according to the manufacturers. Its passive cooling avoids the use of active elements such as fans, which shorten the lifetime of the system.
Arca can work at temperatures between -15 to 65 degrees Celsius. The manufacturers offer a 7-year warranty.
The system is also said to be able to model the usage patterns of users to know the energy needs of the network to which it is connected.
Solartia and IED also stated that the system requires very low maintenance and that no skilled labor is needed for its deployment.
“Arca is not only a generator with storage, but also an information system, as it is designed to communicate with the end-user and monitor human behavior, aspects that seem key to us in these non-interconnected areas,” said IED CEO Iñigo Ayerra.
Founded in 1999, Solartia specializes in solar energy, smart microgrid energy storage, and energy access. IED was established in the early 1990s in the town of Aizoáin, Navarra, with the aim of supplying the industry with electronic products tailored to the particular needs of each segment. Focused on the design, production and assembly of electronic equipment, as well as its marketing and post-sale, IED currently offers solutions for practically all industrial sectors: renewable energy, lifting, construction and electric mobility.
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