Solar Panel Identification Via Deep Semi-Supervised Learning and Deep One-Class Classification

Elizabeth Cook, Shuman Luo, Yang Weng

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


As residential photovoltaic (PV) system installations continue to increase rapidly, utilities need to identify the locations of these new components to manage the unconventional two-way power flow and maintain sustainable management of distribution grids. But, historical records are unreliable and constant re-assessment of active residential PV locations is resource-intensive. To resolve these issues, we propose to model the solar detection problem in a machine learning setup based on labeled data, e.g., supervised learning. However, the challenge for most utilities is limited labels or labels on only one type of users. Therefore, we design new semi-supervised learning and one-class classification methods based on autoencoders, which greatly improve the nonlinear data representation of human behavior and solar behavior. The proposed methods have been tested and validated not only on synthetic data based on a publicly available data set but also on real-world data from utility partners. The numerical results show robust detection accuracy, laying down the foundation for managing distributed energy resources in distribution grids.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2516-2526
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Power Systems
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2022


  • Autoencoder
  • Detection
  • Locations
  • One-class classification
  • Semi-supervised learning
  • Solar panels

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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