Nextracker unveils next-gen tech suite to address hail, terrain and atmospheric conditions

Nextracker NX Horizon XTR web

Solar solutions provider Nextracker will be unveiling a suite of next-generation innovations at this year’s RE+ 2023 in Las Vegas, the largest U.S. solar tradeshow. Each of these releases builds upon proven technology that has been delivered to utility-scale solar power plants for three or more years. The product suite combines hardware, smart software and process innovations to deliver value to owners and EPCs.

NX Horizon Hail Pro

Hail Pro leverages the inherent features of Nextracker’s flagship NX Horizon smart solar tracking system, including its unique balanced design, integrated UPS and independent row architecture. Due to this advanced design, NX Horizon can stow up to four times faster than standard trackers — time that is crucial when hailstorms hit and stow with no operator intervention in the event of a grid outage. The new Hail Pro solution adds automatic stowing using weather service information, hail readiness services and where desired, Hail Pro-75 for stowing at up to 75 degrees for locations subject to extreme hail.

Nextracker developed the Hail Pro solution in collaboration with customers, independent engineers and experts from the insurance industry who are at the forefront of solving the industry multi-million-dollar challenges.

“Getting insurance in hail prone geographies like Texas is an increasingly challenging issue solar project developers and owners face today,” said Michael Alvarez, COO and cofounder of Longroad Energy. “Advanced technology, like Nextracker’s new Hail Pro suite is directionally where our industry needs to be going.” 

NX Horizon XTR-1.5

Nextracker’s latest innovation for hilly sites doubles the capability of the popular NX Horizon XTR terrain following tracker, which has been proven on dozens of utility-scale projects and in-use since 2019. NX Horizon XTR-1.5 significantly reduces and even eliminates earthwork on extreme terrain sites, without complex joints or additional components. XTR can save many tons of steel with shorter piles and thousands of cubic yards of cut and fill; with the benefits of accelerating construction schedules, minimizing environmental impact and reducing project risk.

Minimizing disturbance also prevents long-term soil erosion and preserves habitats, an important factor when it comes to ease of permitting for new projects. Nextracker has a video that shows how XTR helped an Australian EPC fulfill indigenous no-grading land requirements. 

Zonal Diffuse

Nextracker has expanded TrueCapture’s yield optimization and control software with Zonal Diffuse, a new tracking function which enhances energy generation during rapidly changing irradiance conditions. This new technology includes additional high spatial resolution sensing and new control algorithms, adjusting trackers to variations in cloud cover across the entire power plant. Plants equipped with Zonal Diffuse can “chase clouds” for additional gains, without compromising tracking performance during clear sky conditions. Zonal Diffuse complements TrueCapture’s terrain-adaptive Row-to-Row tracking mode and Split Boost, a tracking optimization algorithm for half-cell modules. Read about our latest IE validation report by independent engineering firm, Enertis. 

“Our product development priorities are informed by listening to customers and innovating to create value for them,” said Nextracker founder and CEO Dan Shugar. “The suite of hardware and software technologies launched today benefits customers by accelerating construction, reducing risk in extreme hail, and generating more energy in rapidly changing atmospheric conditions. These technologies deliver improved solar project profitability, and expand the geographic areas where solar is cost effective, furthering our vision of a world powered by renewables.” 

Nextracker has retained the leading global market share position for the 8th consecutive year, according to WoodMackenzie Power & Renewables for solar tracking, having shipped more than 75 GW of solar generation as of the end of 2022.

— Solar Builder magazine







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