Sunday, January 22, 2012

Integrated Solar Power Mounting Systems Dramatically Reduce Costs

Westinghouse Solar, Inc., a designer and manufacturer of solar power systems, published a White Paper today entitled: "The Revolution in Solar Power Mounting Systems." This White Paper details the financial, engineering and customer benefits of rooftop solar power systems that have integrated racking, wiring and grounding, including those from Westinghouse Solar and Zep Solar.

For decades, the standard for rooftop solar power system installation has consisted of a field assembly process utilizing a variety of components that must be sourced, kitted, and assembled onsite. The outcome of this approach resulted in significant assembly cost, as well as systems that were not aesthetically integrated with the design of the home.

As the cost of solar panels has declined, the overall balance of system costs (BOS, or non-panel costs) has become a larger portion of the overall system cost. For example, in 2001 these BOS costs were 40%; by 2013 they are expected to be 57% of the cost of the system. This shift in the cost model has placed increased awareness by solar power installers and system engineers on rooftop systems that reduce installation time and improve system reliability.

"The total installed cost of a rooftop system is the most important economic factor for customers. Reducing system complexity and installation time is the best way to reduce those costs," said Barry Cinnamon, CEO of Westinghouse Solar. "Solyndra had the right idea in targeting installation cost reduction; unfortunately, their solar panels were simply much too expensive. Nevertheless, there are now several integrated rooftop systems on the market that are indeed less expensive than ordinary rack-mounted solar panels."

The White Paper from Westinghouse Solar not only details the key features and benefits of integrated rooftop mounting systems, but also presents an objective overview of the practical considerations that are necessary when these systems are deployed in a code-compliant way.


No comments: