Torquing – The Solar Installation Mystery!

Loosely speaking, torque is a measure of the turning force on an object such as a bolt – and as Dan Shugar, CEO of Nextracker stated : “Torquing is by nature inexact because of the many factors that can affect friction – from surface texture to debris, rust and humidity”*. In this article I will try to shed some light into the mysterious world of torquing in the solar installation world. 

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Cost Reduction, State of the Art and Trends of Structural Solar BoS

From the perspective of an installer the better the planning and the better the execution matches the planning the better the end result and the less likely it is that CO’s will be issued! Sounds easy – should be easy, but in reality….. it is not that easy!

If a project is executed on the fly – the costs have to be higher than well planned & executed projects so therefore the contingency has to be higher!

Check out the presentation to get some ideas how to reduce costs & call us to discuss and support your project!

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Oregon Solar Highway

PGE and ODOT Commemorate the Solar Highway Milestone

October 26 2011 – Aurora Oregon; Representatives from Portland General Electric, the Oregon Department of Transportation, Five Stars International and Contractors working on the Solar Highway 1.745 Megawatt project joined Advanced Energy Systems and Sunstall Inc. at the construction site today to mark the milestone surrounding the beginning of the Solar World module installation. With the final post driven in the six acre site, and over 50% of the Haticon Racking assembled it was time to start mounting the 250 watt solar panels. Assisting in unpacking the first module was the project brainchild, Allison Hamilton of ODOT. Other notables from ODOT were Lynn Aveberck, and Lynn Frank of Five Stars International. PGE representatives included Mark Osborne, Dawn Wilde, and Robert Ferraro.

When completed, the project will provide enough electricity to offset the use of both the North and Southbound rest areas at the project location, approximately 15 miles South of Portland Oregon on Interstate 5. As the primary Solar Contractor on the project, Advanced Energy Systems teamed up with SunStall Corporation for the racking installation, and Christensen Electric of Portland for the primary electrical installation. Read more

Intersolar NA 2012 – Solar Powered BBQ

Thank you for joining us for some barbeque, drinks and exciting solar conversations.

A Special Thanks goes to the Green Point Nursery and their owners

for their hospitality at their site! See you all next year!

The Sunstall Team

Mounting Systems – the base of solar power

A recent survey performed by Photon USA Corp. reveals an increasing number of mounting system manufacturer in the U.S. market. This is not a surprise taking into account that the market has grown by 25 percent and more since 2010. Today installers can choose from no fewer than 262 products manufactured by 56 companies.

Keep it Simple 

The general perception is that mounting systems are cheap and simple and that prices always have to go down. The truth is that prices depend on the spot market for commodities like aluminum and steel and these markets have been very volatile for the last few years. Especially the last months have shown that prices tend to go up rather than down.

By focusing too much on material costs project developers have underestimated the impact of the labor factor in the overall costs of a mounting system. Some manufacturers have re conceptualized their systems to reduce the amount of material needed as well as the time to install the system.

Industry overview

In our upcoming posts we will discuss the advantages and disadvantages of steel versus aluminum, pile driving systems versus concrete foundations and who is offering what type of mounting system.

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