College - Author 1

College of Engineering

Department - Author 1

Electrical Engineering Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Electrical Engineering

College - Author 2

College of Engineering

Department - Author 2

Electrical Engineering Department

Degree - Author 2

BS in Electrical Engineering



Primary Advisor

Taufik, College of Engineering, Electrical Engineering Department


Currently, inverters are needed to utilize solar panels for applications that require AC power. Unfortunately, these inverters are very costly and decrease power efficiency. In this work, two alternatives to using inverters are explored. The first method combines a buck converter with a buck-boost converter to create a sine output. The second method uses switches to change the connections of the solar cells, producing a stepped AC output. Both methods involve embedding the solar cells along with the additional electronics into a solar panel, thus eliminating the need for a separate inverter. Simulations were performed using SIMPLIS, and both methods were compared with a focus on feasibility and cost. Results of the simulation demonstrated that the DC-DC converter method performs better than the multiple switch method. More specifically, the quality of the sinusoidal output voltage from the DC-DC converter method is better than the stepped sine wave produced by the multiple switches. Furthermore, the use of many switches to produce a sine wave like output makes the multiple switch method not practical due to the complexity of circuit as well as cost. Therefore, through these comparisons, we recommend that future projects should focus on implementing prototypes for the DC-DC converter method using buck buck-boost converter.