More Sun From the Roof. Maximum Energy Yield Despite Shade or Different Module Arrangements

In this post, we explain to you how to always produce the highest yields from a PV system using the SMA Power+ Solution. It does not matter whether there are different module arrangements because of roof structure or whether power generation is affected by shade from trees, dormer windows or chimneys.


Shade is dependent not only on the location, size, and type of object that is casting it, but also on the weather, time of day and season. There are shorter periods of shade in summer and at midday with longer periods in winter and in the morning and afternoon.

But, shade affects only part of a PV system module at any given time.  However, exactly the modules shaded that also limit the power of the other modules. Thanks to SMA’s smart module technology, a PV system can be optimized such that it produces the maximum energy yield possible, even in partial shading or with different module arrangements


SMA Power+ Solution consists of the following components:

  • SMA inverter with broad input voltage range for an exceptionally flexible system design
  • Smart module technology TS4R with flexible functions for monitoring and optimization
  • Cloud Connect Advanced communication unit for transferring module data via WLAN or Ethernet to the SMA Sunny Portal monitoring solution
  • Gateway for wireless communication between the TS4R components and connection to Cloud Connect Advanced
  • Sunny Portal monitoring solution from SMA for the best overview around the clock


Sunshine Through the Shade: Optimization for Partial Shading

Usually, only approximately 20 percent of a PV system’s modules are affected by shade. However, if only individual modules are shaded, a PV system cannot work to its maximum performance. Therefore, the TS4R component is specifically attached only to the module that is actually in the shade and incredibly efficiently minimizes output losses. It lowers the voltage on shaded modules and increases the electrical current strength to the level of the unshaded modules. If the modules are not in the shade, TS4R automatically switches to standby mode, reducing energy losses and increasing the service life of the components.


All standard modules can be upgraded by connection system at any time. Targeted use only on affected modules considerably minimizes installation and material costs because there is no longer any need to equip all the modules with module technology that compensates for shading.


Simplify the Complicated: Optimization for Complex System Structures

Sometimes, different roof pitches prevent all modules from being arranged in the same way. In addition, the current trend is for modules set facing not only south (in Australia, facing north), but also east or west because the energy yield is then maximized over the course of the day. A multistring inverter is connected to the individual module arrays in this case.

Modules outside the main arrangement can then be fitted easily and cost-effectively with the TS4R module technology to boost overall system performance. In addition, this allows several modules to be connected to one string at the same time.


Have the Perfect Overview: Monitor at the Module Level

Those who want to know exactly what is happening on their roof can monitor the system with the monitoring Version TS4R. How it works: the Cloud Connect Advanced transmits the information to the Sunny Portal, and from there PV system operators and installers can monitor every module. Even the slightest in irregularities on the module, such as leaves or dirt, can be recognized and quickly remedied, keeping yield losses to a minimum.


For further information please visit our website.


  1. Uwe
    Uwe says:

    If I want to compare soiling effect on three different standard polycrystalline panels, (1 will always be cleaned, 1 never and 1 on a regular basis), can I use three TS4R and one Sunny Boy 1.5 in order to get the parameters of all three panels? Can these data also be monitored using Solar-Log data loggers?
    What equipment to I need exactly for this solution?

    Thank you for your answer.

    Best regards,

    • Annika Linke
      Annika Linke says:

      Hi Uwe, Interesting question, but should be ask to TIGO (Solar Log).
      When monitoring Tigo Optimizer in generell, there currently is a so called Gateway + Cloud Connect Advanced required. Once registered all optimizer are monitored on TIGO Portal eventually. There you`ll be able to track any single Module individually (voltage + current+ power, depending on typ of Tigo-Module). SB1.5-1AV-10 haven`t got yet an separate interface in order to communicate directly to Tigo-Gateway, but do have WLAN + Ethernet Interface of course. So Communication to Solar Log Data Logger is possible as long as your logger is communicating the same way.

      Kind regards, Annika

    • Annika Linke
      Annika Linke says:

      Hi Jessica,
      you can use Sunny Boy 3.0-5-0, Sunny Boy 1.5-2.5, Sunny Boy Smart Energy and further Sunny Tripower inverter.
      Kind regards, Annika

  2. online higher education
    online higher education says:

    Wow that was strange. I just wrote an incredibly long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t appear. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyway, just wanted to say superb blog!

  3. Joseph George
    Joseph George says:

    i have recently installed 5KW SMA Inverter and 20 panels (Solar Modules) on my roof top. After 4pm in evening, about 5 panels are covered by shade. I would like to know whether this will reduce the efficiency of the system as a whole considerably. or will it be negligible.

    • Viktoria Mai
      Viktoria Mai says:

      Hello Joseph,

      referring to your inquiry below I`d like to inform that partly shaded panels aren`t generating an expected current any longer (photovoltaic effect), which of course may have remarkable influences to expected yields as well. In order to reduce-/minimalize those negative effections, modern panels are mostly equipped by a number of bypass diodes.

      Don`t know what 5KW inverter you own, but most of SMA Devices do provide a feature that is called “Opti Trac Global Peak”. Once activated should be also helpful to be reducing shadow effections.
      Another option was to separate all shaded panels from the uneffected one`s in order to let them track independently at Tracker-/Input B. Can be easily checked by using Sunny Design Web.

      For further questions, please feel free to contact us again.

      Kind regards,

  4. philippe
    philippe says:

    Bonjour pouvez vous me dire pourquoi mon onduleur sonny boy 2.5 s’allume vert et rouge en même temps (surtout voyant rouge allumé ) alors qu’il fait grand beau .merci

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