Spread Spectrum Time Domain Reflectometry for Complex Impedances: Application to PV Arrays: Application to PV Arrays

Christopher Deline, Cynthia Furse, Naveen Tumkur Jayakumar, Evan Benoit, Mashad Saleh, Josiah LaCombe, Michael Scarpulla, Joel Harley, Samuel Kingston, Brent Waddoups

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

18 Scopus Citations


Spread spectrum time domain reflectometry (SSTDR) has previously been used for detection and location of intermittent faults on live electrical wiring. These intermittent faults can be open circuits, short circuits, or resistive changes, all of which preserve the original shape of the SSTDR correlated waveform. But things are very different when SSTDR encounters a complex impedance discontinuity such as a capacitor or inductor. In this case, the reflection is a function of frequency, changing the shape of the SSTDR signature. In this paper, we will show the SSTDR response to single capacitors and inductors. We will also explore how SSTDR responds to arrays of PV panels (which are capacitive) connected by wires. We will show both simulations and measurements. In some configurations, it is relatively easy to see faults, although algorithms are still under development. In other configurations, little change occurs, which makes it very difficult to create a system for testing for these faults.

Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages4
StatePublished - 12 Nov 2018
Event54th IEEE AUTOTESTCON, AUTOTESTCON 2018 - National Harbor, United States
Duration: 17 Sep 201820 Sep 2018


Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityNational Harbor

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 IEEE.

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/CP-5K00-73007


  • Capacitance
  • Complex impedances
  • Inductance
  • Photovoltaic (PV) arrays
  • Spread spectrum time domain reflectometry (SSTDR)


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