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What is a photovoltaic inverter?

A photovoltaic inverter (photovoltaic “inverter / converter”) is an electrical device that converts a direct DC current into an alternating AC current.

Very often the term used is the one in English DC (direct current - direct current) and AC (alternating current - alternating current).

In order to power the utilities through a photovoltaic system we must interface them through an inverter which is positioned between the photovoltaic modules and the electricity grid. We can consider it as the electronic control unit of a car that manages the engine, its operation, optimizing performance.

The types of inverters are different:

  • single-phase version typically for civil use (for systems normally powered at 220V, 50Hz)
  • three-phase version for industrial systems (systems powered at 380V, 50Hz).

Each inverter is chosen in relation to the type of photovoltaic system, connected to the distribution network (grid-connected) or in the off-grid version for the construction of stand-alone systems. Mainly the grid-connected inverter has stringent technical requirements relating to the quality of the energy fed into the grid, however, the off-grid version must satisfy the continuous work with the storage system, having to power different electrical loads without the aid of the grid.

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