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10 Tips to Mitigate ‘Ring of Fire’ Eclipse Impact on Solar Power

SHANGHAI, Oct. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — As the USA eagerly anticipates the upcoming annular solar eclipse, set to occur on Saturday, October 14th, after an 11-year absence, it will bring a direct impact on the power output of solar photovoltaic (PV) plants. Ahead of this momentous occasion, Qn-SOLAR, a leading PV manufacturer, is providing effective strategies to minimize the adverse effects of solar eclipses on PV power generation.

According to NASA, the annular solar eclipse, also known as ‘ring of fire’, begins in Oregon at 9:13 am PT and ends in Texas at 12:03 pm CT. An annular solar eclipse happens when the Moon is at or near its farthest point from Earth, appearing slightly smaller than the sun, so it does not block the entire solar disk.

Solar eclipses pose a significant challenge to solar power generation, as the decrease in irradiance directly affects the output of solar energy systems. As the eclipse progresses, solar generation declines in proportion to the impact on irradiance, creating a temporary shortfall in power production.

Qn-SOLAR's Self-manufactured Solar Panels.
Qn-SOLAR’s Self-manufactured Solar Panels.

As a key player in the PV industry, Qn-SOLAR has summarized 11 key takeaways to reduce the impact on solar power generation.

1.      Energy Storage

Before a solar eclipse, grid operators can boost their energy reserves by expanding the capacity of battery energy storage systems. Qn-SOLAR had already completed installations of 15GW and owned power plants of 1.5GW by 2022.

2.      Smart Grid

By incorporating smart grid technologies, grid operators can effectively manage and dispatch electricity resources with greater precision, and automatically adjust power supply and demand to ensure the stability of the grid.

3.      Diversified Energy Structure

A diverse energy structure with wind power, hydroelectric power, and thermal power can offset the decrease in solar power generation during an eclipse. Furthermore, the progress of distributed generation and microgrid technologies strengthens the grid’s ability to withstand disruptions. Qn-SOLAR initiated PV in 2014, wind power in 2020, and energy storage in 2023.

4.      Dynamic Scheduling

Grid operators can monitor eclipses in real-time and adjust generation plans and power dispatch accordingly, minimizing the impact on the grid. Besides, Early warnings allow for adequate preparations in advance.

5.      Flexible Resource Dispatch

Flexibly dispatching various power generation resources, such as fast-start gas turbines, hydroelectric plants, and energy storage systems, helps manage power fluctuations.

6.      Demand-side Management

Implementing demand-side management strategies like time-of-use pricing and emergency peak reduction encourages users to adjust their electricity consumption, reducing power demand during the eclipse.

7.      Intelligent Scheduling Algorithms

Leveraging advanced intelligent scheduling algorithms like particle swarm optimization and genetic algorithms, dynamic optimization and scheduling of the grid can be achieved, improving the efficiency of power system operations.

8.      Scientific prediction

Combining integrated weather observation system and astronomy forecast enables more accurate forecasts of the timing, location, and magnitude of the eclipse, providing precise decision-making guidance for grid dispatch.

9.      Development of Virtual Power Plant Technology

Integrating various distributed generation resources through virtual power plant technology creates a controllable and dispatchable power generation unit, enhancing the operational stability of the grid.

10.    Enhanced Grid Interconnection

Strengthening interconnections between grids facilitates resource complementarity and optimal allocation, improving the overall operational stability of the power system.

Notably, the solutions above can greatly reduce the impact, they can’t eliminate it completely.

Qn-SOLAR offers integrated solar PV solutions with dedicated business teams and technical support in various regions. They provide localized services and have a complete and responsive after-sales management process to address both routine and unexpected situations. For more information, please visit: