Mounting highlights from SPI 2018

If you’ve been following Solar Power World‘s newsfeed, you know that all the new products for the year are being released at Solar Power International 2018. There was a lot to see on the show floor with mounting, racking and tracking systems, but here are a few highlights I noticed walking the exhibit hall.

Schletter’s damperless tracker

Schletter is back in the U.S. market, after a brief hiccup when its Germany parent company filed for bankruptcy earlier this year. This new tracking system uses no hydraulic dampers and instead mitigates wind forces with a self-locking mechanism. Each post has a mechanical locking element that automatically locks as soon as the row stops moving. When at rest, Schletter’s tracker has the durability of a fixed system and can withstand 160 mph wind speeds.

Pegasus Solar’s no water worries

Pegasus Solar has a unique display with its flashing and tile mounts being hit with water alongside competitor products. Pegasus’s one-piece flashing has a 0.9-in. elevated water seal. It definitely moves the water out of the way, and Pegasus thinks this is the best waterproof design in the industry. This waterproofing technique can also be seen with its tile replacement mounts that use no wasters and provide an obstruction-free drain path.

Esdec’s “floating array”

Dutch mounting manufacturer Esdec has officially entered the U.S. market with its FlatFix system for flat rooftops. The company, started 14 years ago by former solar installers, aims to produce fast and efficient products with direct installer input. The FlatFix system is a lightweight, clickable system. Everything in the system clicks together, including wire management and attachment points. Esdec’s self-leveling attachment essentially turns the system into a floating array, because the attachment at the base can rotate in its connection as the roof constricts and contracts.

Axsus terrain-following tracker

Axsus showed off its Sol-X Tracker that is compatible across various foundation solutions. The system doesn’t use a standard torque tube to rotate panels; instead it uses roll-formed sections to better handle bending loads. Axsus is a big proponent of using the structural advantages of fixed-tilt racking to design tracking systems that can better adapt to bending and torsion affects.

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