Thermal Imaging is Critical for Solar Panel Inspection and Diagnostics

August 12, 2020

Photovoltaic (aka “solar”) panels often are rapidly becoming a viable alternative power source to large property owners and even some smaller municipalities. As with any other power generating system, regular inspection and maintenance must be conducted in order to prevent failure of critical system components. Thermal imaging is a convenient and cost-effective way to have your solar panels tested, and the benefits of this diagnostic are plentiful. When you add in the capability of conducting a thermal scan via an aerial drone, you can quickly and easily spot potential problems on even the largest of solar farms, some of which can cover several acres of land.

It’s Highly Accurate

Thermal imaging, if done correctly, can very accurately indicate faults in your solar panels that could lead to costly repairs if not corrected. On a thermal scan of your equipment, hot spots indicate defective cells, issues with electrical connections, and internal physical damage that can create heat in your panels. Early detection of these problems can prevent equipment failure down the road.

It’s Convenient

This kind of testing can also be done while your system is under load. Other diagnostics for your panels need to be conducted in controlled conditions, but thermal imaging cameras are portable and allow for proper testing and imaging in the field. Your panels don’t need to be disconnected and can continue to run throughout the diagnostic, so you’re never left without power.

It’s Safe and Non-destructive

Depending on the diagnostic company you choose, your panels may be inspected from a distance or even by drones, both of which allow low- and high-voltage systems to be inspected safely. Click here to learn more about how thermal imaging can provide a safe, non-intrusive, and accurate diagnostic on your solar panels.

Additionally, regular and proper testing can help prevent equipment failure that can lead to serious damage to your panels and even your property. Because panels are exposed to moisture often, parts can easily become corroded and lead to overheating or fires, and testing will clearly show any faults or dangerous defects before they become major issues.

It Can Extend the Life of Your Equipment

Lastly, thermal imaging and the issues it can quickly uncover can extend the life of your solar panels, sometimes by several years. Finding and correcting faults and defects before they lead to equipment failures will keep your system running longer and more efficiently, ultimately saving you time and money on maintenance.


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