One of the largest areas of innovation within solar involves the mounting system. Probably the most competitive solar product market, mounting systems are an important element of solar arrays—they secure solar panels to the roof or the ground. Here, we go over the basic categories of roof-mounted solar systems to help new installers get a grasp on installation.
Sloped Roof Mounting Systems
When it comes to residential solar installations, solar panels are often found on sloped rooftops. There are many mounting system options for these angled roofs, with the most common being railed, rail-less and shared rail. All of these systems require some type of penetration or anchoring into the roof, whether that’s attaching to rafters or directly to the decking.
Flat Roof Mounting Systems
Commercial and industrial solar applications are often found on large flat rooftops, like on big-box stores or manufacturing plants. These roofs may still have a slight tilt but not nearly as much as sloped residential roofs. Solar mounting systems for flat roofs are commonly ballasted with few penetrations.
Solar Shingles and BIPV
As the general public becomes more interested in aesthetics and unique solar installations, solar shingles will rise in popularity. Solar shingles are part of the building-integrated PV (BIPV) family, meaning that solar is built-in to the structure. No mounting systems are needed for these solar products because the product is integrated into the roof, becoming part of the roofing structure.
Read the full article at Solar Power World.