Photovoltaic sample-and-hold circuit enabling MPPT indoors for low-power systems

Weddell, Alex S., Merrett, Geoff V. and Al-Hashimi, Bashir M. (2011) Photovoltaic sample-and-hold circuit enabling MPPT indoors for low-power systems. IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems I: Regular Papers, 59, (6), 1196-1204. (doi:10.1109/TCSI.2011.2173393).


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Photovoltaic (PV) energy harvesting is commonly used to power autonomous devices, and maximum power point tracking (MPPT) is often used to optimize its efficiency. This paper describes an ultra low-power MPPT circuit with a novel sample-and-hold and cold-start arrangement, enabling MPPT across the range of light intensities found indoors, which has not been reported before. The circuit has been validated in practice and found to cold-start and operate from 100 lux (typical of dim indoor lighting) up to 5000 lux with a 55cm2 amorphous silicon PV module. It is more efficient than non-MPPT circuits, which are the state-of-the-art for indoor PV systems. The proposed circuit maximizes the active time of the PV module by carrying out samples only once per minute. The MPPT control arrangement draws a quiescent current draw of only 8uA, and does not require an additional light sensor as has been required by previously-reported low-power MPPT circuits.

Item Type: Article
ISSNs: 1549-8328 (print)
1558-0806 (electronic)
Related URLs:
Keywords: maximum power point tracking, photovoltaics, energy harvesting
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Divisions: Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering > Electronics and Computer Science > Electronic & Software Systems
ePrint ID: 272832
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2011 10:55
Last Modified: 27 Mar 2014 20:18
Research Funder: EPSRC
Next Generation Energy-Harvesting Electronics - holistic approach 1763
Funded by: EPSRC (EP/G067740/1)
Led by: Bashir M. Al-Hashimi
1 October 2009 to 31 March 2013
Publisher: IEEE Circuits and Systems Society
Contact Email Address:
Further Information:Google Scholar
ISI Citation Count:0

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