The renewable industry is undergoing remarkable growth in the last few years. Solar power has emerged as a crucial tool for making the transition toward green revolution. The most important part of a solar power system includes a solar mounting structure.
Let’s unravel the solar mounting structure designs in detail.
Without further ado, let’s begin with the basics.
What is a Solar Mounting Structure?
A solar mounting structure, also known as a solar racking system, is a supportive framework or structure designed to securely and optimally position solar panels or photovoltaic (PV) modules. Its primary purpose is to ensure that solar panels are securely anchored and oriented to capture sunlight effectively, maximizing energy production from the sun.
An Overview of Different Types of Mounting Structures
1) Fixed-Tilt Solar Mounting Structures
Fixed-tilt solar mounting structures are one of the most common and traditional choices for solar installations in India. As the name suggests, these structures are fixed at a specific angle and orientation to maximize solar exposure throughout the day.
They are often used in utility-scale solar farms and commercial installations. Fixed-tilt structures are cost-effective and require minimal maintenance, making them a preferred choice for many solar projects in India.
2) Solar Tracker Mounting Structures
Solar tracker mounting structures are designed to follow the path of the sun throughout the day, optimizing the angle of the solar panels for maximum energy capture. In India, where sunlight is abundant, solar tracker systems are gaining popularity due to their ability to significantly increase energy output.
These structures can be either single-axis or dual-axis, with the latter providing the highest efficiency. Solar tracker mounting structures are particularly advantageous for residential and commercial rooftop installations.
3) Ground-Mounted Solar Mounting Structures
Ground-mounted solar mounting structures are commonly used for large-scale solar projects, such as solar farms and industrial installations. These structures are designed to be installed directly on the ground, providing stability and easy access for maintenance.
Ground-mounted systems offer flexibility in terms of orientation and tilt, making them suitable for a wide range of geographical locations and solar panel types. Their robust construction can withstand extreme weather conditions, ensuring long-term durability.
4) Rooftop Solar Mounting Structures
Rooftop solar mounting structure designs are an ideal choice for residential and commercial installations, especially in urban areas where land space is limited. These structures are designed to be installed on rooftops, maximizing the utilization of available space.
In India, where energy demand is high in densely populated cities, rooftop solar mounting structures have become a key solution for decentralized power generation. They are available in various designs, including fixed-tilt, ballasted, and flush-mounted, catering to different rooftop types and structures.
5) Floating Solar Mounting System
With India’s vast network of rivers, lakes, and reservoirs, floating solar mounting structures have gained significant attention in recent years. These structures are specially designed to support solar panels on water bodies, allowing for energy generation without occupying valuable land.
The floating solar mounting structures are not only environmentally friendly but also help reduce water evaporation in water reservoirs. As water bodies are abundant in India, floating solar installations have the potential to revolutionize the country’s solar energy production.
6) BIPV (Building-Integrated Photovoltaics)
Building-Integrated Photovoltaics, or BIPV, is a cutting-edge approach to solar mounting structures that combines solar panels with building materials. BIPV systems seamlessly integrate solar panels into the architecture of a building, serving dual purposes – generating electricity and providing structural support.
In India, BIPV is gaining attention as it allows for sustainable and aesthetically pleasing solar installations. This innovative approach is well-suited for urban areas where space is limited, and aesthetics are a concern.
7) Solar Carport Mounting Structures
Solar carport mounting structures are designed to provide shade for vehicles while simultaneously generating electricity. These structures are commonly found in commercial spaces, educational institutions, and parking areas.
They offer the dual benefit of protecting vehicles from harsh sunlight and generating clean energy. As electric vehicles gain traction in India, solar carport structures provide a convenient way to charge EVs while contributing to the country’s renewable energy goals.
8) Ballasted Solar Mounting Structures
Ballasted solar mounting structures are a popular choice for rooftop installations in India. These structures use weight as their primary means of support, eliminating the need for roof penetrations. Ballasted systems are versatile and easy to install, making them an ideal choice for both flat and pitched rooftops.
They are designed to distribute weight evenly, ensuring the safety and integrity of the roof. Ballasted solar mounting structures are a cost-effective and non-invasive solution for rooftop solar installations.
9) Pole-Mounted Solar Mounting Structures
Pole-mounted solar mounting structures are suitable for locations where space is limited or where ground-mounted installations are not feasible. These structures use vertical poles to elevate solar panels, allowing for efficient use of available space.
They are often used in agricultural fields, remote areas, and locations with uneven terrain. Pole-mounted systems can be customized to the required height and tilt angle, ensuring optimal solar exposure.
10) In-Ground Solar Mounting Structures
In-ground solar mounting structures are designed for soil or sand-based installations. They are commonly used in desert regions where loose soil conditions prevail. These structures require a foundation dug into the ground, providing stability and support for the solar panels.
In-ground mounting is a reliable option for arid areas in India, where wind and sandstorms can pose challenges to solar installations.
FAQs – Solar Mounting Structure
What is a mounting structure in a solar power plant?
A mounting structure in a solar power plant is a framework or support system designed to hold and position solar panels to maximize exposure to sunlight.
How much does a rooftop solar system cost in India?
The cost of a rooftop solar system in India can vary widely, depending on factors like system size, quality, and location. On average, a residential rooftop solar system can cost anywhere from INR 20,000 to 50,000 per kilowatt (kW).
What are the different types of solar panel mounting structures?
Different types of solar panel mounting structures include fixed-tilt, solar tracker, ground-mounted, rooftop mounts, ballasted mounts, pole-mounted, and in-ground mounts, each serving specific installation requirements.
Can a faulty mounting structure affect a solar project?
Yes, a faulty mounting structure can adversely affect a solar project. It can result in reduced energy production, structural damage, and safety hazards, making it essential to have a robust and properly maintained mounting system.
How do solar panels mount on a roof?
Solar panels are mounted on a roof using various methods, including ballasted systems, rail-based systems, and direct attachment to roof beams or rafters. The choice depends on the roof type and design.
Do solar panels need mounts?
Solar panels typically need mounts or mounting structures to securely position them, optimize sunlight exposure, and ensure long-term durability. The best direction for solar panels to face in India is towards the south.
Why do solar panels need mounting structures?
Solar panels need mounting structures to position them at the correct angle and orientation for maximum sun exposure. This enhances energy production and ensures the panels’ long-term stability and performance.
What is a ground-mounted solar structure?
A ground-mounting solar system is a solar power installation that is placed directly on the ground, typically used in large-scale projects, such as solar farms and utility-scale installations. These systems are cost-effective and highly adjustable for optimal energy capture.
In 2023, the solar mounting structure market in India has evolved to accommodate a wide range of innovative solutions. From traditional fixed-tilt structures to advanced solar tracker systems, the country is witnessing a rapid transformation in the solar power industry. They are not just a means of supporting solar panels; they are integral to the efficiency, sustainability, and aesthetics of solar installations.
Do you want to start your sustainable investment journey, get in touch with Sustvest for a detailed consultation as India is well-positioned to harness its abundant solar resources and meet its clean energy goals.
Also read: Solar Subsidy, Rebates, and Incentives in India 2023.
Founder of Sustvest
Hardik completed his B.Tech from BITS Pilani. Keeping the current global scenario, the growth of renewable energy in mind, and people looking for investment opportunities in mind he founded SustVest ( formerly, Solar Grid X ) in 2018. This venture led him to achieve the ‘Emerging Fintech Talent of the Year in MENA region ‘ in October 2019.