An Overview of Spread Spectrum Time Domain Reflectometry Responses to Photovoltaic Faults

Mashad Uddin Saleh, Chris Deline, Evan Benoit, Samuel Kingston, Ayobami S. Edun, Naveen Kumar Tumkur Jayakumar, Joel B. Harley, Cynthia Furse, Michael Scarpulla

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus Citations


Spread spectrum time domain reflectometry (SSTDR) is a broadband electrical reflectometry technique that has been used to detect and locate faults on live electrical systems, including photovoltaic systems. In this article, we evaluate the detectability and localizability from both existing literature and our own measurements using SSTDR of open-circuit faults, connection faults, short-circuit faults, ground faults, arc faults, shading faults, bypass diode faults, and accelerated degradation faults in PV cells and mini-modules. Reflection magnitudes for these faults are compared. Preliminary data on buried and grounded PV cable along with arc fault detection are presented.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number9007610
Pages (from-to)844-851
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Journal of Photovoltaics
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2011-2012 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5K00-75182


  • Accelerated degradation faults (ADF)
  • arc faults (AF)
  • bypass diode faults (BDF)
  • connection faults (CF)
  • degradation
  • ground faults (GF)
  • open-circuit (OC) faults
  • photovoltaic (PV) cells
  • reflectometry
  • shading faults
  • short-circuit (SC) faults
  • spread spectrum time domain reflectometry (SSTDR)


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