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Time-Based Tracker Boosts Solar Energy Production

Solar panels are normally positioned at a fixed position. If a panel uses a tracking system to follow the movement of the Sun, however, more solar energy can be collected. Instead of having light sensors that are often disturbed in cloudy environments, a new time-signal-based system uses a programmable logic controller (PLC) to give a start signal at the end of a fixed time.

The signal starts an induction motor, and a wheel having 96 teeth senses the position. The motor will stop each time it senses the next tooth. When the tracker reaches the sunset position, it will stop, reset, and come back to the sunrise position. All the activities are executed by the PLC.

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