Study: Inverters with multiple MPP trackers do not bring any advantages

German inverter manufacturer Kaco New Energy GmbH commissioned the Freiburg, Germany-based Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy Systems ISE to compare inverters with multiple or only one MPP tracker (MPP: maximum power point). Multi-tracker devices, which individually control the MPP for several DC inputs, have been widely used by most manufacturers for years. They are intended to allow the inverter to be adapted to module strings with different conditions, such as strings of different sizes or, above all, different irradiation conditions.
A real comparison based on measurement results was not carried out for the study. Instead, two Kaco devices for larger systems – a »Blueplanet 60.0 TL3 M1« and a »Blueplanet 165 TL3 M1« – were compared by simulation with two »synthetically generated« devices of the same type, but with six and nine MPP inputs, respectively. All other characteristics of the devices, especially efficiency and power parameters, were identical. According to Kaco, the additional yields of the multi-tracker devices were »one to two percent per year in the best cases.« In practice, however, this could be »offset by the higher efficiencies of inverters with one MPP tracker.«

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