Swinerton In the News

Swinerton Renewable Energy: October 30, 2014

Locus Cloud Service Promises Unparalleled PV Performance Tracking

Intense competition has driven the costs of manufacturing solar photovoltaic (PV) cells and modules down sharply in just a few short years.

This has led downstream solar industry participants to focus on reducing solar's 'soft' and balance-of-system costs. Some innovative solar energy sector participants see great promise in eking out and amassing small gains in efficiency -- gains that can that collectively make a big difference to commercial and utility-scale PV system operators, as well as consumers.

Locus Energy, the developer of an enterprise-class, cloud-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) platformthat's said to provide operators unprecedented data collection, analytics and reporting capabilities, is offering just such a solution. On Oct. 22, Locus announced that Swinerton Renewable Energy will make use of its SolarNOC and PVIQ analytics suite to optimize the management of its portfolio of solar PV assets.

Leveraging public and proprietary data sets gleaned from satellites and on-site sensors, Locus is able to provide its users actionable data on the performance of PV systems at a much greater level of geographic resolution and analytic detail than has ever been possible -- remotely or on-site. That, in turn, enables the company to identify and account for the factors that lead to divergences in forecast and actual performance of solar PV systems -- whether distributed, commercial or of utility-scale -- and take action to remedy them, Adrian De Luca, Locus Energy's vice president of sales and marketing, explained to 3p in an interview.

Leveraging "Big Data" analytics In addition to solar irradiation levels, the Locus platform's solar PV monitoring capabilities provide current data on a range of pertinent weather and atmospheric condition metrics, such as cloud cover, at much greater resolution than can be obtained from NOAA and NASA data sets, or those of competitors, De Luca continued. Similarly, Locus Energy is working to expand the range of the historical data sets included in its cloud-based platform and application offerings.

Managing solar PV asset fleets All of these elements and attributes, as well as being cloud-based and delivered as SaaS, contributed to Swinerton Renewable Energy's decision to make use of Locus Energy's SolarNOC and PVIQ suite to manage its entire fleet of PV assets.

San Francisco-based Swinerton's PV portfolio encompasses more than 400 megawatts of rated renewable power generation capacity. Another 600 MW is now under construction.

"Swinerton will use Locus's SolarNOC and PVIQ in tandem with its own SOLV solution to provide best-in-class monitoring, analytics, and O%7EM (operations and maintenance) services for both its utility-scale and commercial fleet customers," the two companies explain in a press release.

"In addition, Locus Energy has expanded its data acquisition and presentation capabilities, enabling Swinerton to integrate data from its industry-leading SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) system."

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