Lit review on Solar panel frames Essay Example

Literature Review on Solar Panel Frames

Solar panel frame is an important component of most of the solar systems. According to Life’s Good Company (LG), most solar panels are fitted with frames to protect them from damages and to provide mounting attachment points. In addition, to mount a solar array on the ground, a frame is required to mount the solar panel on to. According to Boxwel (2016), most of the suppliers of solar panels usually provide suitable frames but a buyer can design his or her own frame on site. For most of the solar panel manufacturers, aluminum is the most preferred material for making the frames because it is rust-free and durable. It is also important to note that glass and aluminum have different contraction and expansion ratios. This implies that an appropriate material should be placed between the solar panel and the aluminum frame to avoid build up of stress (Boxwel, 2016). One of the most preferred materials is butyl rubber, an elastic double-sided tape that allows some movement and ensures that the solar panel is kept within its frame. This material is preferred by solar panel manufacturers because of its high resistance to damages caused by ultraviolet rays from the sun as well as its adhesion capabilities that last for a long period of time (LG).

Even though solar panel frames come in different types, they all serve the same function when properly fastened to appropriate mounting systems. According to LG Company, some solar panel frame have very thin walls and somehow flexible while others have thick walls and highly inflexible, but they all serve exactly the same purpose. However, highly rigid frames logically have less chance of being deformed and becoming loose with time.

The premier magazine for Australia’s clean energy industry discusses about the solar mounting system. Sponsored by Sunlock, the magazine outlines mistakes that are related to mounting solar systems and how to avoid them. According to Sunlock, solar mounting system is a fundamental feature in the installation of a solar system. Sunlock magazine notes that when installed in a proper manner, the right solar mounting system offers an appropriate mechanical support that a solar system requires in order to protect it from failures caused by strong winds and other potential inducers of structural failures. The mounting system can also provide the necessary elevation and orientation of a solar system so as to enhance it performance in terms of production of energy. To provide the required elevation, the system can be designed to sit on tilt legs or separate sub-frame. It can also be customized to fit the specifications and size of solar panel and roof style. According to Sunlock magazine, a good mounting system should be made of strong and rust-free material such as aluminum or stainless steel and should be easy to install.

Sunlock also discusses the installation procedure for solar panel frames. In its Groundlock installation manual, Sunlock outlines the procedure for installing Groundlock frames. It also presents a list of tools required for installation process. According to Sunlock (2013), Groundlock frames recompense for about 300mm slope at the site of installation through adjustment of posts’ length. The stiffness of the frame is achieved through extensive triangulation and bracing. Sunlock further notes the Groundlock frame comprises an upper frame made from aluminum and a lower frame made from steel.

Mounting Systems GmbH website offers rich information regarding the structure of solar panel frames. The company notes that construction of a solar panel frame is the same as the roots of a tree; it must provide a solid foundation and offer the required strength to safely support the modules in the required position (Mounting Systems GmbH). Hren (2010), on the other hand, discusses the various factors to consider when choosing the design of the solar panel frame. According to Hren (2010), choosing the design of a solar panel frame is a process that involves looking at the advantages and disadvantages of different frame structures. He further notes that the ideal design of a frame varies with sites; every site is unique and each frame design will be unique too. Apart from the site considerations, another key factor is the tilt angle of the array (Hren, 2010).

References:

Boxwel, M. 2010. Solar electricity handbook: a simple, practical guide to solar energy

designing and installing photovoltaic solar electric systems. Melbourne: Greenstream Publishing.

Boxwel, M. 2016. Solar electricity handbook: a simple, practical guide to solar energy

designing and installing photovoltaic solar electric systems. Melbourne: Greenstream Publishing.

Hren, R. 2010. Ground mounts for PV arrays. Retrieved from

http://www.homepower.com/articles/solar-electricity/design-installation/ground-mounts-pv-arrays

Life’s Good (LG). Solar power explained: all you want to know about solar power. Retrieved

from https://www.lgenergy.com.au/faq/solar-power-explained/the-points-to-consider-when-choosing-great-solar-panels

Mounting Systems GmbH. Mounting Systems the base for solar power. Retrieved from

http://www.pvxchange.com/partner/mountingsystems/documents/MountingSystems%20Salesfolder%20EN.pdf

Sunlock. The Australian Solar Mounting Systems Guide: The resource for Australian solar

professionals looking to purchase a solar mounting system. Ecogeneration. Retrieved from http://www.energymatters.com.au/images/sunlock/mounting-systems-guide.pdf

SunLock 2013. Groundlock installation manual. Retrieved from

http://www.sunlock.com.au/pdf/GroundLock_Installation_Manual_v1.1.pdf

Solar pumping solution. Atlas Tracker — 40m2 PV panel capacity.

http://www.solarpumping.com.au/panels_trackers_atlas_tracker.htm