Solar tracking system using pic microcontroller

Solar tracking system using pic microcontroller, In this article you will learn what is solar tracking system? Why We need of solar tracking system ? Which methods of solar tracking system being used now a days ? How to design Solar tracking system ? circuit diagram of solar tracking system. How to write code of Solar tracking system using pic microcontroller? Let’s start with basic introduction of solar tracking system.

What is Solar tracking system ?

Solar tracking system is a method to withdraw maximum power from solar panels. As we know solar panels convert solar energy into electrical energy through photovoltaic phenomenon. Greater the intensity of solar light falls on solar panel, greater output observe at the output of solar panel. So we Need to develop a such method which rotate solar panel according to tracking of sun. So that we can withdraw maximum power from our installed solar panels.

I have already explained that why we need of Solar tracking system. The objective is to expose solar panel to maximum time in front of solar light to get maximum power from solar panels. Many methods have been developed to for Solar tracking system. But in this article I will discuss only two popular methods of Solar tracking system. Name of two methods are given below:

  • Sun solar tracking system
  • Time solar tracking system

Sun Solar tracking system :

In this method, we rotate the solar panel with the help of stepper motor with the direction of sun light. The main purpose is to expose solar panel maximum to sun light. cease greater the sun light, greater will be the output of solar panel.A stepper motor is used to rotate solar panels in the direction of  sun light. In this method two lights sensors are used to measure sun light. Light dependent resistor (LDR) and photo diode both are use for this purpose.

Time solar tracking system :

This method is basically an enhancement of sun solar tracking system. In this advance method of Solar tracking system, time is also involved for the rotation of solar panels according to sun light direction. A real-time clock is used to keep information of real-time during the day. With the help of real-time clock and microcontroller, Solar tracking system turn off automatically in night-time. Real time clock use time information during the day and season.  Season information is also used to keep idea about the rotation of sun. With the help of this information solar panels rotate according to rotation of sun.

In this article I have discussed sun solar tracking system.  In sun solar tracking system both hardware and software is used to developed a complete project. Main components of solar tracking system is given below :

Components :

  • Solar panel
  • Stepper motor
  • ULN2003
  • 5 volt power supply
  • PIC16F877A microcontroller
  • Oscillator
  • Resistors
  • Capacitors
  • Light dependent resistor
Power suply :

5 volt power supply is required to power ULN2003 and microcontroller. One can easily design 5 volt power supply using step down transformer 220v / 12v AC. Step down voltage is fed to full bridge ( Full wave rectification ). After that polar capacitor is used to remove AC ripples from output. After that 7805 voltage regulator is used to get regulated 5 volt output. This 5 volt output can be used for power source to pic16f877a microcontroller and ULN2003. Circuit diagram of 5 volt power supply is given below:

5 volt power supply using 7805

5 volt power supply using 7805

you may also read this article to design power supply:

How to design power supply for projects

Sun solar tracking system working :

In this method two light dependent resistors are used. LDRs are separated with the help of sheet ( Metallic sheet or wood shield ) .One on the left hand side of sheet and other on the right hand side of shield. This is main part of this project. Two Light dependent resistors measure intensity of light with the help of microcontroller Now the question come into mind, how these light dependent resistors rotate solar panels with the help of solar panel. I will explain it later. If you don’t know how to measure intensity of light using pic16f877a microcontroller. Check following article :

Light senor using PIC16F877A microcontroller 

I hope after reading above article you know that how to measure intensity of light using Light dependent resistor and pic microcontroller. Now come to the question ” How these LDRs will rotate solar panels with the help of stepper motor. LDR is used to measure intensity of light with the help of microcontroller. Microcontroller reads values of both light dependent resistors.In other words microcontroller reads intensity of light with the help of light sensors.

If the intensity of light is same of both light sensors, solar panels don’t rotate and stepper motor remain off. Solar panel also remain stable in night timing when there will be no light. In morning, left light sensor is turned on and start rotating solar panel with the help of stepper motor. Rotation of motor depends on the intensity of light. Solar panel keep rotating untill intensity of light on both sensor become equal. When both sensors have same intensity of light, solar panel become stable. This process repeat in opposite direction after 12:00 am or after afternoon.  In evening when light intensity of both light sensors become equal, solar panel again become stable. This process remains continue during day timing.

Circuit diagram of sun solar tracking system using pic microcontroller :

Circuit diagram of sun solar tracking system using PIC16F877A microcontroller is given.

sun solar tracking system using pic microcontroller

sun solar tracking system using pic microcontroller

In above circuit diagram, two light dependent resistors are used to measure intensity of light.  ULN20003 is used as a stepper motor driver. Bipolar stepper motor is used. ULN2003 is used because microcontroller pins can not provide current more than 30mA. ULN2003 is used to amplify current. In other words its translate low current signal to high current signal.

If you don’t know how to interface stepper motor with pic16f877a microcontroller and its working. Check following article :

Stepper motor interfacing with PIC16F877A microcontroller 

This is all about sun solar tracking system project. I have explained all the things and all the topics you need to know before making this project. I also posted  separate articles on light sensor and stepper motor interfacing with pic16f877a microcontroller. Hopefully After reading this article, you will be to write code and make hardware for your project. I recommend you write code of this project yourself. This way you can polish your learning skill.  Kindly share this article with others.


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