Comprehensive Electrical, Control and Protection Systems for Solar Farms

Given the global community’s strong emphasis on sustainable development and the preservation of the environment for future generations, there is an urgent need to prioritize the development and utilization of renewable energy sources. MAPNA Group, a leading company in the power industry, has made significant strides in the field of renewable energy by creating wind and solar farms. Additionally, their subsidiary, MAPNA Electric and Control Engineering and Manufacturing Company (MECO), has also dedicated efforts to this cause. They have become the first company to successfully design and construct a 2-MW solar farm in the country, located near Qazvin city. This project has relied on the expertise and capabilities of domestic engineers and manufacturers who specialize in solar farm design, as well as the production of essential components such as solar panels, inverters, electrical distribution and protection switchboards, transformers, SCADA systems, and more.

Photovoltaic, also called PV for short, is a method of using solar energy to produce electricity. The process of producing electricity from sunlight using solar cells is called photovoltaic. PV devices (solar cells) convert solar radiation energy into electricity without producing noise, pollution or motion, and therefore, they are durable and have a long lifespan. Solar energy, like other renewable energy sources, has features and advantages over other energy sources, the most important of which are:

  1. No reliance on exhaustible fuel sources
  2. No waste generation from the solar power plant
  3. The ability to build solar power plants with different capacities enables the provision of optimal energy sources for consumers who are far from the distribution network, such as low-population villages.
  4. Long lifespan (about 20 years) and easy maintenance
  5. No need for water and ancillary facilities
  6. High flexibility for operation with different production capacities (from a few watts to several megawatts)
  7. Easy installation and configuration


The main components of a solar far are:

Photovoltaic Solar Panels (PV Modules)

A solar power plant generates electricity by harnessing the photovoltaic phenomenon. In simple terms, this means that solar cells convert sunlight into electricity. These devices, also known as PV devices or solar cells, can convert solar energy into electricity without creating any noise, pollution, or movement. This makes them highly durable and long-lasting. Polycrystalline and monocrystalline modules are typically used in large-scale power plants, often referred to as megawatt-scale plants. Today, Pak Atiyeh Energy Company, a subsidiary of MAPNA Group, manufactures solar panels that are both high quality and competitively priced, comparable to those produced by well-established global manufacturers.

Transformer, LV and MV switchboard

Teksaz Tablo Beshel Company, a subsidiary of MAPNA Group, has achieved success in the development of electrical switchboards. Their systems have been utilized in Kahak solar farm in Qazvin. In addition, Iran Transfo, a domestic company, has supplied the transformers for the farm.


The inverter is a key component of the solar power plant, as it affects the quantity and quality of the power output. Inverters can be classified into two main categories: grid-connected and off-grid. Grid-connected inverters, also known as on-grid, grid-tied, or GTI inverters, can be directly connected to the national grid and inject the electricity generated by the photovoltaic modules into the grid for consumption.

Off-grid inverters are isolated from the grid and operate independently. In off-grid solar systems, the electricity generated by the solar panels is usually stored in batteries. Off-grid inverters convert the DC current from the batteries into the AC current required by the electrical loads. Off-grid inverters can also be used for portable applications. Using its expertise and research and development, MECO has succeeded in developing and commercializing the first domestic inverter in the country for solar power plants.

Solar Power Plants SCADA Systems

In solar power plants, as in other power plant projects, the communication (signals and commands) with the upstream grid is performed by SCADA systems in substations. Until now, the monitoring system in solar power plants has been based on the platforms provided by the main equipment (inverters) manufacturer.

The monitoring system in these power plants allows the observation of the electrical parameters, analog and digital signals such as temperature and solar radiation, and other relevant parameters such as alarms. It also provides the possibility of appropriate control actions to adjust some parameters, such as active and reactive power range (power factor correction) for the operator.

This system is also developed using the products of MECO, including hardware and software.

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