SunLink’s VERTEX platform gets an upgrade, expands monitoring capabilities

SunLink Corp.’s next-generation, secure project optimization platform VERTEX now features expanded electromechanical monitoring capabilities that provide detailed operational alerts on inverters, trackers, communication networks, met stations and other project systems. In addition to informing stakeholders with real-time performance data, the platform’s new O&M module flags operational issues in need of troubleshooting, provides historical alert and maintenance logs, allows remote control of energy assets and facilitates team dispatch. First introduced in April 2016 as an iOS app, the platform is now also available via any internet-connected device. The video series above is a deep dive into the philosophy behind the system.

“We developed the VERTEX platform to solve a wide-range of solar project limitations and open up business opportunities for more players, fostering industry growth,” explains SunLink CEO Michael Maulick. “In this case, VERTEX’s O&M module takes direct aim at the looming economic risk posed by long-term O&M costs by making it possible for the first time to model those costs with accuracy. It also provides a platform on which middle market O&M providers can build a more profitable and competitive business through delivering accurate long-term contracts and servicing projects more efficiently. That translates into a larger universe of solar infrastructure that pays reliable, long-term dividends. Ultimately, VERTEX is encouraging more investment in the solar space.”

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SunLink VP of Products Kate Trono explains: “We’re our own most demanding VERTEX customer, as our PowerCare O&M team relies on VERTEX to streamline its operations. But at the same time, the PowerCare team is also our most valuable software development partner as their solar services best practices inform VERTEX’ novel approach to device alerts and O&M team workflow.”

VERTEX’ cybersecurity enables project stakeholders to remotely manage their fleet, resulting in fewer on-site visits, immediate responses to abnormal energy performance and an increase in energy and financial yields.

The VERTEX platform was born from SunLink’s development of its next-gen TechTrack Distributed single-axis tracker. More and more solar developers are electing to install distributed solutions, which have thousands more electromechanical components to monitor and optimize than centralized systems. Therefore, it was essential that SunLink’s tracker solution coupled electromechanical innovation with the advanced technology necessary to accurately model two decades or more of operation and maintenance costs up front and at the same time target and simplify any necessary maintenance over the life of the system.

VERTEX is also the brain behind SunLink’s continued mounting system evolution. The real-time data captured by the platform has enabled SunLink to incorporate dynamic design features into its mounting systems that respond to environmental conditions in real time, driving out costs. All of these capabilities are only made possible because VERTEX devices and the software platform are protected by the highest levels of cybersecurity, including multi-factor protocols such as biometrics and tokenization, among other measures.

— Solar Builder magazine

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