Choosing the right mounting option for your solar array :
A variety of options are available for mounting your solar array. Each has different benefits. Your system designer will work hand in hand with you to develop a design plan that optimizes production, works within the constraints of the site, and meets your expectations aesthetically.
Probably the most common type of mounting system, roof mounting, involves the panels being attached to an existing roof using a racking system. The roof surface can belong to a home, garage, storage building, barn or any other roof deemed structurally sound. The advantage to this type of mounting is that the existing structure is being utilized and no new structure is needed.
A pole mounted array is a group of panels attached to racking that are mounted on top of a metal pole. The poles are sized and buried in accordance with local wind load ratings. The advantages to using pole mounts are that they can be set out in a field or other sunny area for maximum sun exposure. They can eliminate the need to place panels on the roof of the home.
Ground Mounting system with a firm foundation.
Our ground mounts utilize galvanized steel posts which are set in concrete a minimum of four feet in the earth. Solar modules are long term, no maintenance by design so we want our mounting structure to be as well.
We are seeing some companies utilizing precast cement block to hold their solar structures. This is a way around having a backhoe for installation and its cost. However, any foundation built correctly, needs to be placed below the frost zone so it stays in one place.
Looking at a number of these precast units after one winter shows movement of one portion of the solar array one way and the next another direction. Frost heaving through the year has moved the entire precast block. What will this look like after 10 years. Not very good in our view.
We do not believe this is a place to skimp and have our own excavating equipment to keep the cost down as low as possible.
Ballasted Solar PV Mount
A ballasted solar PV mount is a graceful, highly engineered solution that secures the array without damaging the flat roof. It is compatible with the usual framed photovoltaic modules and typically does not require roof penetrations. Made from lightweight and strong aluminum construction, this Uni-rack Rapid Rack G-10 system is at a 10-degree tilt and will look pretty sweet when it’s done. Read more