Operating Temperatures of Open-Rack Installed Photovoltaic Inverters

Sarah Kurtz, Z. Zhang, L. Wang, J. Wu, P. Quan, R. Sorensen, S. Liu, J. Bai, Z. Zhu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus Citations


This paper presents a model for evaluating the heat-sink and component temperatures of open-rack installed photovoltaic inverters. These temperatures can be used for predicting inverter reliability. Inverter heat-sink temperatures were measured for inverters connected to three grid-connected PV (photovoltaic) test systems in Golden, Colorado, US. A model is proposed for calculating the inverter heat-sink temperature based on the ambient temperature, the ratio of the consumed power to the rated power of the inverter, and the measured wind speed. To verify and study this model, more than one year of inverter DC/AC power, irradiance, wind speed, and heat sink temperature rise data were collected and analyzed. The model is shown to be accurate in predicting average inverter temperatures, but will require further refinement for prediction of transient temperatures.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)344-351
Number of pages8
JournalSolar Energy
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/JA-5J00-67120


  • Inverter
  • Operating temperature
  • Photovoltaic system
  • Reliability


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