by Vivian Bullinger | 01.06.2023
A virtual PV plant is a combination of several independent PV plants. In this virtual plant, data such as yields and consumption of the individual PV plants are bundled centrally. The current performance of several plants can be seen at a glance and synergies can be exploited.
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Virtual PV plant (VPP) should not be confused with virtual power plant. A virtual power plant is a concatenation of decentralized units in the power grid. The individual units are then coordinated and controlled via a central control system.
Unlike a VPP, a virtual power plant can include a wide variety of generators and storage facilities. In addition to PV plants, these include biogas, wind power, hydropower plants and various electricity storage systems.
In the case of the virtual PV plant, the type of plants is limited to photovoltaics. And there is no central control center in this case either. The focus here is on the evaluation and visibility of important data.
The structure of a virtual plant can be very different and can be set up individually. The example on the right is a solar park with more than 2 MWp. In such large PV power plants, more than one data logger (such as from Solar-Log) is usually used for monitoring and energy management.
Previously, the data from the individual data loggers had to be combined in an external system. Now, all components such as inverters and meters from all data loggers are used to calculate the overall balance and displayed in the form of a virtual plant.