Soiling of the PV module glass is one of the major problems in solar power plants with the attendant loss of efficiency and reduction in performance ratios. The DustIQ sensor is a simple and cost-effective method for soiling measurement. Based on the Optical Soiling Measurement (OSM) technology, the sensor can be easily integreated in solar power plant monitoring systems.
The unit is mounted to the frame of a PV module and does not need sunlight to operate. It continuously measures the transmission loss through glass caused by soiling, so that the reduction in light reaching the solar cells can be calculated.
DustIQ measures the soiling ratio, which can be translated to power loss in real time. This enables the plant operation and maintenance staff to know when a critical level of soiling is reached and it has become necessary to start cleaning procedures.
DustIQ is maintenance-free. It is cleaned in the same way, and at the same time, as the PV modules around it. Large solar power plants have different soiling rates across the site, which is why IEC 61724-1 requires multiple measurement points.