PV Panel Surge Protection Devices

The ABB Low Voltage Products division released a line of OVR PV UL 1449 3rd Edition, pluggable DC DIN Rail surge protection devices (SPD) specifically designed for photovoltaic (PV) applications. The new SPDs protect solar panels from damage from direct and indirect lightning strikes, which solar panels are especially susceptible to because of their large, fully exposed surface areas and typical installation in open, isolated areas. The new PV product range uses fast-acting metal oxide varistors to limit overvoltage to values compatible with the sensitive equipment connected to the network. ABB says extensive damage and expensive repairs can result from lightning strikes if surge protection is not present. The PV-specific SPDs are available in maximum discharge currents (Imax) of 15 or 40 kA, maximum continuous operating voltages of 600, 800, and 1,000 VDC, all with pluggable cartridges (“P”), and optional integrated remote indicator contact (“TS”). (http://www.abb.com)