What Is Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPTT)?

Solar panel installation

When researching solar panel technologies, you may encounter Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPTT). All solar panels can generate electricity. By leveraging photovoltaic (PV) cells, they will convert sunlight into electricity. The efficiency at which solar panels perform this conversion, however, may vary. With MPTT, you can improve the efficiency of your solar panels to squeeze out more electricity.

Overview of MPPT

MPTT is a technology that’s designed to optimize the performance of solar panels by adjusting their electrical load. It’s known as “maximum power point tracking” because it aims to generate the maximum amount of power from the solar panels with which it’s used. It tells the solar panels to maximize their power generation based on the battery bank.

How MPPT Works

MPPT works by leveraging a controller that regulates the solar panels’ voltage and current. When installed, the controller will monitor the solar panels’ output while simultaneously adjusting their electrical load.

Most controllers use pulse-width modulation (PWM) to make the necessary electrical load adjustments. They will send electrical pulses to the solar panels. The properties of these electrical pulses will govern the electrical load adjustments. By sending electrical pulses in specific widths, the controller can make adjustments to the solar panels’ electrical load.

Benefits of MPTT

With MPTT, your solar panel installation will become more efficient. Efficiency is a measurement of how much electricity a solar panel generates relative to its sun exposure. A 66% efficiency rating means the solar panel will convert two-thirds of the sunlight to which it’s exposed into electricity.

MPTT will maximize the power generated by your solar panels, thus making them more efficient. It won’t affect how much sunlight they are exposed to it. Rather, MPTT will tell your solar panels to maximize their power generation so that they become more efficient.

You can save money by installing an MPTT controller. It will reduce your dependence on utility power. The MPTT controller will result in more clean and renewable electricity, which you can use it to offset the cost of grid power. If your solar panels generate an excess amount of electricity, in fact, you may be able to sell it back to the utility company for bill credits.

MPTT will allow your solar panels to operate in a wider range of environmental conditions. Solar panels are affected by environmental factors like temperature, shading, snow and more. MPPT controllers can adjust the electrical load on your solar panels to ensure that they are always operating at their maximum power point, regardless of the environmental conditions.

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