Solar tracking using reflecting mirrors.
Solar Energy is the fastest growing renewable energy source in the world. The soaring production and the significant technological breakthrough of solar energy in certain countries like China and India has brought about a drastic reduction in the cost of its exploitation. Today, the price of solar PV panels in China has declined by as much as 50%. Despite this immense progress in the solar energy industry, the question of how solar energy has evolved in Ghana and Africa at large, remains unanswered. Solar tracking; a technology that was introduced in 1991 to serve as a proponent of power generation from solar panels, has not yet been implemented anywhere in Ghana and many other countries in Africa. Research shows that Ghana receives sunshine duration of 1,800 hours to 3,000 hours per annum, providing a friendly environment for solar energy exploitation. Due to this, some renewable energy engineers argue that, for a geographical location like Ghana, solar tracking generates an insignificant amount of profit, considering the expense of technology involved in constructing tracking systems. This paper describes the design of “Mtrack”; a low-cost solar tracking technology that uses reflection mirrors to focus sunlight unto the maximum power points of solar panels. This is aimed at reducing the number of expensive motors and sensors used for tracking since this design uses just one motor and a voltage comparator logic but can still focus light unto an entire array of solar panels.
Capstone Project submitted to the Department of Engineering, Ashesi University in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, April 2019.
Solar Energy, Solar, Energy, renewable energy, Solar tracking, power generation, Solar panels