Optimizing Solar Panel Performance, FTUI Students Competes in the PIMNAS 35 2022

Jason Jimmy Amadeus Palenewen, Juan Khosashi, Jonathan Tjioe, Angelina Grace, and Evan Fadhil Nurhakim, made it through to the final stages of the 2022 National Student Science Week (PIMNAS) in the Karsa Cipta Student Creativity Program (PKM). Under the guidance of Dr. Kenny Lischer S.T., M.T., lecturer at DTK FTUI, a team of students from the Department of Chemical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Universitas Indonesia (DTK FTUI) class of 2019 created the SMART (Solar Mechanical Adjustable Ray Tracker) to optimize electricity production on solar panels.

SMART is a solar panel tracking device based on a mechanical fluid control system to optimize solar panel performance. The SMART system is designed based on several simple components, varies in size, and works passively (without electricity). This system supports the fulfillment of the seventh point of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), namely receiving access to affordable, reliable, and modern energy for the people of Indonesia.

Jason as the team leader explained the background behind the idea of ​​SMART, “Solar energy is one of the main sources of energy available in large quantities. The use of solar energy as an alternative energy source to meet the electricity needs of the Indonesian people is the right choice because of Indonesia’s geographical location in the tropics and the availability of sunlight throughout the year. By optimizing the absorption of solar energy, the use of non-renewable energy will be smaller so that it has an impact on reducing carbon dioxide gas emissions by the Sustainable Development Scenario by the International Energy Agency (IEA).”

“SMART’s innovation has various advantages when compared to electric-based solar trackers. First, SMART is a solar tracker that works passively. This type of solar tracker does not use a motor drive to follow the sun’s daily movements. Second, SMART can work without the need for electrical energy, solar Other trackers consume about 20% of the total power generated by solar panels, so they are considered ineffective. Third, SMART’s maintenance costs are much lower than electric-based solar trackers, so they can be used in areas with minimal maintenance funds. Fourth, SMART is flexible because it can be placed in various areas with diverse geographical conditions,” explained Dr. Kenny Lischer.

Dean of FTUI, Prof. Dr. Heri Hermansyah, ST., M.Eng., IPU expressed his appreciation and hopes for SMART “The idea in the form of a solution called SMART provided by the team from DTK FTUI is expected to have an impact on solving the problem of energy security in Indonesia. Apart from that, it is hoped that this solution will also this team can give the best results in the 2022 PIMNAS 35 event, so that FT and UI can be proud.”

In SMART’s development stage, Jason and the team have taken several commercialization steps, such as talking with several prospective partners regarding SMART’s commercialization, entering into an MoU with one of the partners to support RnD from SMART, and have received endorsement from a Dutch company to support SMART’s future development. . Jason and the team will return to compete in the final stages of PIMNAS 35 2022 on 30 November–4 December 2022 at the University of Muhammadiyah Malang.


Bureau of Public Communications
Faculty of Engineering, Universitas Indonesia