SunnyCal Solar debuts ‘Collapsible Array’ with disaster relief PV mounting in mind

FEMA-1 Structure equipped with four 380W solar modules

FEMA-1 Structure equipped with four 380W solar modules (PRNewsfoto/SunnyCal Solar Inc.)

SunnyCal Solar, a solar products company specializing in “personal solar” products, announced the first in a series of new products that enable grid-free power.

Collapsible solar arrays can be shipped fully assembled, and can be unfolded to an upright position, producing power immediately. The innovative lightweight structure can include up to 1,500 W of solar panels, and a unique “Daylight Inverter”, that powers a 120V receptacle whenever the sun shines; no batteries required. A custom designed screw-in anchor system and tamper resistant screws enable secure installation.

RELATED: What to look for in your next pile-driving machine

SunnyCal CEO Steve Dollens said: “Our customers are seeking grid-free power solutions. The Collapsible Array is a direct result of our efforts to enable personal power for disaster-stricken areas like Central California and Puerto Rico.” The company believes the Array fills the power gap between disaster and power restoration.

Upcoming personal power products include: Daylight Inverters for AC well water pumps, solar metal roofing and self-powered greenhouses.

SunnyCal Solar has been installing turnkey solar systems since 2006.

— Solar Builder magazine

VOTE for Solar Builder’s 2016 Projects of the Year

Project of the Year AwardsThe nominations are in, and now it’s time for you, the reader, to choose the best of the best for our fourth annual Solar Builder Project of the Year Awards. Because of the big influx of ground-mount submissions this year, we’ve divided up the voting into three categories: roof-mounted, C&I ground-mounted and utility-scale ground-mounted. The highest overall vote-getter will be featured on the cover of the Nov/Dec issue of Solar Builder magazine.

To vote:
1) Click the links below for the nominees;
2) Read up on each nominee; and
3) Cast your deciding votes on this page in the form directly below!

Rooftop Project nominations

Ground-Mount nominations (C&I)

Ground-Mount (utility and municipalities)


 

2016 Project of the Year Voting








— Solar Builder magazine

2016 Solar Mounting/Racking Guide: Product Showcase

PV mounting solutions

Photo credit: EcoFasten Solar

Most of you may have learned that the earth is not flat. Which is too bad, really. If it was flat, we’d just place PV panels all over it and call it a day. Our Mounting Guide would certainly be a lot less interesting.

But no, of course it isn’t flat. It’s not even round, really. It’s hilly and bumpy and slanted and hard and soft. It’s also full of wind and falling water and ice. And sometimes, when the gods are bored, the ground literally quakes. And that’s just on one site.

Somehow, on top of all that, we are now installing GWs of renewable energy. How is it even possible? Why, mounting and racking solutions, certainly help. Below is a guide to many of today’s top mounting/racking companies, the services they offer and a standout product in their lineup. And if you missed any of our other Mounting Guide articles this year, check those out too:

 

Roof-Tech

Roof Tech’s RT-[E] Mount

RT- [E] Mount is a compact, versatile rail-less PV mounting system. Simply attach the RT-[E] Mount to the rafters or anywhere else on roof decking. Once the panels are fastened, the system array is electrically bonded. RT-[E] Mount comes complete with RT Butyl flashing, renowned for its watertight performance and durability. PE stamped certification letters available: UL 2703, ICC ESR-3575, ASTM 2140, Fully Waterproof.

Lineup Snapshot

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X
X

Types: Rail-free

Website: www.roof-tech.us
Contact: info@roof-tech.us

RELATED: Mounting with butyl rubber: How Roof Tech gets a leak-proof seal 

 

Spice-Solar

Spice Solar’s complete system

Spice Solar has developed a complete system that reduces parts and rooftop installation time on all roof types and all wind/snow zones. No more racking, mid and end clamps, transporting 20-ft rails, sawing, splicing and grounding — not to mention all the purchasing, inventory and logistics hassles that go along with this blizzard of rooftop parts.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X

Types: Integrated racking

Engineering Services: Layout/design

Website: www.spicesolar.com
Contact: info@spicesolar.com

 

 

NEW-SolarRoofHook-ProductSolarRoofHook’s All Tile Adjustable Roof Hook

SolarRoofHook’s All Tile Adjustable Roof Hook is the leading mounting hardware for clay and concrete tile roofs in the industry. It is designed to work with a variety of tile sizes and types, including both flat and Spanish tile roofs. This hook has three points of adjustability and is compatible with all major racking manufacturers, accepting 5/16 in. or 3/8 in. bolts.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X

Types: Rack-mount, hooks

Website: www.solarroofhook.com
Contact: jwiener@quickscrews.com

 

NEW-ECOFASTENEcoFasten’s Rail-Free Rock-It System

With the top-down leveling of EcoFasten Solar’s rail-free Rock-It System, the installer can level as they go or after the install. Also, the extensive EcoFasten line of patented watertight solar roof mounts is comprised of a series of product systems characterized by roof-type application. Each system can be paired with a wide variety of brackets, allowing installers to attach EcoFasten Solar roof mounts to virtually any racking option.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X
X

Types: Structural, rail-free

Engineering Services: Layout/design

Website: www.ecofastensolar.com
Contact: (877) 859-3947

RELATED: Do you need a solar snow management system? 

 

CertainTeedCertainTeed’s Solstice System

CertainTeed’s Solstice System features high-efficiency, 60-cell monocrystalline or polycrystalline photovoltaic panels with power outputs from 260 W to 285 W. The rack-mounted modules are available in a variety of black and white frame and backsheet combinations. Solstice is also backed by CertainTeed’s equipment, power output and installation workmanship warranty — one of the most comprehensive in the industry.

 

Website: www.certainteed.com/roofing/solar

 

MagerackMagerack’s Solar Mounting System

The Magerack Solar Mounting System is a turn-key solar mounting solution that includes all components from the rail and clamps to roof attachments. The system is UL 2703 listed and has a Class A file rating with integrated bonding and grounding. In particular, its patented L-foot with flashing is easy to install and absolutely waterproof at a competitive price. Magerack will also have innovative rail-less mounting system available this year.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X

Types: Structural, hooks

Website: www.magerack.com
Contact: info@magerack.com

 

SnapNrackSnapNrack’s Series 100 Roof Mount System

The SnapNrack Series 100 Roof Mount System is engineered to optimize material use, labor resources and aesthetic appeal. The system boasts pre-assembled, stainless steel “Snap-In” hardware, watertight flash attachments and installs with a single tool. It is fully integrated with built-in wire management solutions for all roof types, one-size-fits-all features and can withstand extreme environmental conditions. It is listed to UL Standard 2703 for Grounding/Bonding, Fire Classification and Mechanical Loading.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X
X

Types: Rack-mount, hooks, fixed tilt

Engineering Support: Layout/design

Website: www.snapnrack.com
Contact: contact@snapnrack.com

 

Solar-SpeedrackSolar SpeedRack’s SpeedMount

Solar SpeedRack’s SpeedMount (UL 2703, 1703 and 467) is a shared rail system.  The black anodized aluminum rails are shipped pre-assembled and are adjustable to fit over 95 percent of the available modules. Its rail strength and spans are industry leading with roof penetrations further reduced by using its SpeedFoot, a non-penetrating load-bearing rail attachment making this system an ideal solution for high wind and/or snow loads. Through use of its calculator, available free of charge on its website, customers can design their project in portrait, landscape or a combination of both and produce an accurate bill of materials for the racking required.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X
X
X

Types: Rack-mount, fixed-tilt, carport

Engineering Support: Layout/design, geotech

Website: www.solarspeedrack.com
Contact: shane@solarspeedrack.com

 

QuickRack-systemQuick Mount PV’s Quick Rack

Quick Mount PV’s patented mounting system Quick Rack is a simple, cost-effective and elegant rail-free solar mounting system. Featuring QRack technology, the patented system is an integrated roof mount and racking system, engineered to be robust and structurally sound. The system works with standard module frames and comes with state-of-the-art design software. Quick Rack ships in small boxes, saving money on shipping and logistics. With no rails, installation is fast and simple with mounts-to-modules instead of mounts-to-rails-to-modules.

Residential
C&I
Utility
Roof-mounts
Ground-mounts

X
X

Types: Rack-mount, rail-free, hooks

Engineering Support: Layout/design, installation

Website: quickmountpv.com
Contact: sales@quickmountpv.com

Click 2 for rooftop commercial and ground-mount products

— Solar Builder magazine

New AC solar ground-mount concept ready to deploy from CoWatt Energy, Darfon America

CoWatt Energy and Darfon America have collaborated to integrate Darfon’s microinverter technology into PowerFunnel, CoWatt’s innovative AC solar ground-mount solution.

PowerFunnel is an entirely new concept in ground-mount PV construction, the first fully integrated solar power generation building block. It is the fastest and easiest way to deploy solar power. Patent-pending design, PowerFunnel comes off the truck ready to deploy. Each unit has the solar panel, micro inverter, cabling and structure preassembled and ready to place on the customer’s property.

Darfon microinverter

Darfon’s microinverter lineup

For years, the solar industry has massively invested in reducing the cost of solar power production. However, improvements to deploying solar power have been incremental at best. “From the moment we deployed our first ground-mount system, we knew there had to be a better way,” said Cole Brady, CoWatt founder and Chief Technology Officer. “When I was first introduced to the PowerFunnel concept I was impressed with the potential for streamlining ground-mount installations,” said Bryan Whitton, Darfon Product Manager.

“Each PowerFunnel comes as an integrated unit from the factory, so our choice of components was critical,” added Brady. CoWatt partnered with Darfon, an established publicly traded company and member of the BenQ group, as the microinverter provider. Darfon microinverters have an excellent reputation for reliability and innovation. They offer the flexibility to work with a variety of modules with either 60 or 72 cells and power ratings up to 350 watts.

RELATED: How inverters are changing PV systems with bundled services 

PowerFunnel fills the need for a completely scalable, ground mount, ballasted structure that is extremely fast to install with minimal environmental disruption. Whether installing a few units or thousands, PowerFunnel can be installed with the same ease, efficiency and consistency.

PowerFunnel is available in three configurations: 240VAC grid-tied, 12/24VDC for small applications, and high voltage DC for off-grid or other applications. Additional information is available at www.powerfunnel.com. Dealer, integrator and installer inquiries are welcomed. Visit Darfon booth #31, at Solar Power Southwest on June 7th and 8th in San Antonio and arrange to see PowerFunnel.

— Solar Builder magazine

DCE Solar’s Contour DB racking selected for 1.38 MW installation

DCE Solar ContourAfter exceeding expectations on their first solar installation, ASSA ABLOY selected DCE Solar’s highly-adaptable Contour DB (Driven Beam) racking system for their second installation. The original project over-delivered in terms of ease of installation despite very uneven terrain, which normally would have had to be significantly graded to accommodate traditional racking systems. However, since Contour can be adjusted to follow topography up to a 20-percent grade, ASSA ABLOY was able to forego a majority of the cost and time associated with grading the site, saving enough money to completely offset the costs of the racks themselves.

“Sites like ASSA ABLOY’s are exactly why we developed Contour,” said Bill Taylor, CEO of DCE Solar. “Being able to utilize sites with minimal site grading presents far more opportunities to expand solar. We’ve routinely found that Contour has been the turnaround factor for projects that would otherwise have not been built due to additional construction costs.”

RELATED: Mounting Challenges: Landfills, Brownfields, Water-Saturated Sites 

Contour’s high level of adaptability and ease of installation are attributed to a few key elements:

● Single point purlin connection – Allows the rack to pivot and seamlessly follow the topography up to a 20 percent grade
● Ease of alignment – A top beam adapter gives unmatched adaptability and simplifies the alignment process
● Nesting of zees & cees – Increased structural stiffness provides a compact design
● Jig assembly – Allows for greater module installation efficiency, significantly reducing labor costs and ensuring perfect panel alignment
● Integrated grounding – No additional module grounding accessories and only minimal grounding wire required
● Built-in wire support – No further wire trays needed

DCE Solar Contour DBConsidering the size and scope of the ASSA ABLOY project, which totaled 4,256 modules capable of producing over 1.38 MW of power, the ability to work with, instead of against, site topography was a huge advantage. The project was led by EnterSolar, who has used DCE Solar products in other installations as well. On-site installation was completed by Next Era Integrated.

“Over the years we’ve installed many of top-tier racking products and found DCE Solar’s Contour product to be unmatched,” said John Penton, President and Owner of Next Era Integrated. “Contour not only allows for reduced labor time but easily follows significant changes in elevation. In addition, the design accommodates heavy snow loads and challenging, rocky soils using screw foundations.”

“We’re proud to be the company behind the industry’s most topographically adaptable racking system,” said Taylor. “DCE Solar’s mission has always been to elevate the future of solar. Expanding its use and implementation is essential to achieving that goal.”

— Solar Builder magazine