Engineering Services

The Southwest Technology Development Institute (SWTDI) installs Data Acquisition Systems (DASs) at proposed sites for renewable energy systems. The data from these DASs are used to perform resource assessment for wind energy, solar energy-photovoltaic (PV), and solar-thermal systems.

SWTDI custom instrumentation is used to monitor remote, engine-driven, small and medium sized electrical grids and hybrid energy systems (up to about 250 kW) for long-term assessments of loads and harmonic distortion. Data acquisition systems are used to store and transmit data for months and years.

BMI and Fluke equipment are used for short-term (hours and days) power quality measurements on various PV systems, inverters, and loads associated with PV systems.

SWTDI helps purchasers write technical specifications for PV systems of any size. Emphasis is on compliance with the National Electrical Code and good engineering practices. SWTDI also assists purchasers in evaluating technical proposals for PV systems of all sizes. SWTDI assists purchasers of PV systems by designing and specifying the components for the entire electrical balance of systems (BOS-equipment other than the modules and array size) for PV systems of any size.

SWTDI performs electrical design reviews of any size PV system with emphasis on National Electrical Code compliance and good engineering practices. Such design reviews are best accomplished in the procurement process after the vendor design has been completed but before any hardware purchases are authorized.

SWTDI performs acceptance testing and electrical inspections on PV systems to include good installation practices, code compliance, PV system dc and ac performance, wet and dry insulation tests, and system functioning test.