Solar Power International 2011

This year, North America’s largest, most comprehensive B2B solar power trade show and conference opens up exciting, new opportunities in the emerging market of Dallas in October.

Solar Power International (SPI) will deliver on its mission to advance and support the solar power industry and to promote the growth of new U.S. solar markets. According to the State Energy Conservation Office (SECO), Texas ranks first in the United States in its solar resource potential. With its abundant sunshine and solar-incentivizing legislation in the works, Texas is poised to rocket up from a current ranking of No. 10 in PV installations to No. 1 or 2 in the next five years.

Widely regarded as the can’t-miss event for the solar industry, SPI draws nearly 24,000 professionals from 125-plus countries. Nearly 20 percent come to this global event from outside the United States. Attendees include manufacturers, installers and contractors, distributors, engineering firms, utilities, government representatives and policy-makers, investors and financiers, architects, builders and developers ­— anyone who needs to stay on top of the latest developments in solar energy.

More than 1,100 companies representing the solar industry spectrum exhibit on 1 million sq ft of total gross space. Exhibits highlight the latest in PV cells and modules, balance of systems, material and equipment suppliers, distributors, integrators, installers and solar service providers, thermal solar technologies, concentrating solar power (CSP) and solar thermal electric and concentrating PV (CPV), publications and an additional array of products and services.

Now is the time to make connections in Texas and throughout the solar industry. SPI provides those in the solar field the opportunity to build their network face-to-face in SPI’s general sessions, conference sessions, receptions and business partnering appointments and throughout the exhibit floor.

SPI is presented by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) and Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA). All proceeds support the expansion of the U.S. solar energy market through SEIA’s and SEPA’s year-round research and education activities, as well as SEIA’s advocacy. 

Campbell Scientific offers pre-configured and custom automated data acquisition packages specifically designed for solar monitoring applications. The CST100 is one such system specifically designed for CST monitoring applications where active, direct normal and diffuse irradiance measurements are required. Typical uses include research and development, resource assessment and performance monitoring of concentrated solar power (CSP) and concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) technologies.

Along with standard meteorological measurements, the CST100 now has options available for AC and DC power measurements. Individual module, string and array DC current and DC voltage and real AC power for single-phase, split-phase and three-phase connections, including power quality parameters, are continuously measured. Real-time or interval data are stored locally on the datalogger and can be collected via Modbus, DNP3, LoggerNet or other standard communication protocols over an RS-485, fiber-optic, TCP/IP, cellular or satellite link.

The success and profitability of large projects depend on minimizing installation time and costs, while improving the balance of system. That’s why Conergy designed SolarLinea — a uni-axial tilting device for solar installations on the ground and roofs — with a terrain-adaptable design that eliminates the typical ground preparation and installation costs. The Conergy SolarLinea was engineered as a photovoltaic frame for use on exposed surfaces. This Conergy mounting system was specially developed as a load-bearing system for laminates, but can also easily be used for framed modules.

With light driven posts that fit a standard die pile driver and no concrete to form and pour, installation time is significantly reduced. The SolarLinea design reduces or eliminates grading and earthwork, accommodating up to ±10 percent terrain height variation. To optimize energy production, the SolarLinea offers portrait and landscape module layout. The shoulder-height assembly, customized parts that require no onsite drilling or cutting and standard SunTop rails and Quickstone technology ensure a fast and simple installation.

Considering the entire product lifecycle, the SolarLinea piles have an expected 85-year, in-ground lifespan and easy site reclamation.

Enecsys Ltd., a solar micro inverter manufacturer headquartered in the United Kingdom but with sales and support offices in Redwood Shores, Calif., announces UL 1741 certification for its single and Duo micro inverters that match solar PV module performance and service life. The SMI-S240W-60 and SMI-S240W-72 are 240-W, single micro inverters for 60 cell and 72 cell solar modules. Also certified is the SMI-D360W-72, a 360-W Duo product for 72 cell solar modules. The Enecsys Duo converts the DC input from two solar modules, with maximum power point tracking for both modules, into a single, grid-compliant AC output. This Duo micro inverter enables solar system costs to be reduced so that there is no cost premium over systems that utilize string inverters.

Enecsys micro inverters are based on a patented design that eliminates the need for life-limiting components, such as electrolytic capacitors and opto-couplers. The products are supplied with a 20-year warranty and have a peak efficiency of 94 percent for the 240-W models and 95 percent for the 360-W model.
Depending on the environmental conditions and system configuration, solar PV installations with Enecsys micro inverters harvest 5 to 20 percent more energy over the life of the system. The AC outputs of micro inverters are connected in parallel, so each solar module becomes an independent AC power generator. In addition, micro inverters make systems easier to design and install, improve safety by eliminating dangerous high voltage DC wiring and enable roof space usage to be maximized because modules can be used on any plane and with any orientation.

Enecsys will show the new UL certified products, together with the recently announced SMI-D480W-60 Duo and iPhone monitoring application, at SPI in North Hall, booth 511.

Enphase Energy’s third generation solar microinverter, the M215 and Engage Cabling System, is one of the world’s most efficient microinverter technology. The M215 integrates power electronics and custom microchip innovation to deliver 96 percent efficiency. Additionally, the M215 offers a “single-bolt” mounting bracket to simplify installation and features the solar industry’s first 25-year limited warranty.

Next Generation Energy is a leader in the engineering of renewable energy products and services. Its team of dedicated professionals serves the needs of architects, engineers, contractors and end-users by providing single source accountability for full-service design consulting, engineering, procurement, manufacturing and distribution of complete energy management systems.

SMA America and SMA Canada are now securing orders for their medium-voltage turnkey power solution, the SMA MV Power Platform. Available as an open, shaded or enclosed structure, the MV Power Platform joins the Sunny Central High Efficiency (HE) and award-winning Compact Power (CP) lines of solar inverters in SMA’s North American utility-scale lineup.

SMA’s 1.01.6 megawatt medium-voltage turnkey power solution includes two Sunny Central inverters; a medium-voltage transformer; optional DC or AC/DC disconnect cabinets; and a control and supply panel for power distribution to local loads and (optionally) field tracker motors. It also features: easy integration with installer SCADA equipment; a modular, steel base with all component interconnection cabling; and a convenient plug-and-play installation scheme. Designed for Seismic Zone D applications, all configurations can be deployed in temperatures to -40 C, making them ideal for the Canadian solar market and other cold regions. SMA offers a variety of service and warranty options, including a 99 percent uptime guarantee.
Available grid management features include: control of active and reactive power; automatic over-frequency response; power factor adjustment; power curtailment; and low voltage ride through. SCADA connectivity via Modbus and the SMA OPC Server ensure optimum communication and control.

Designed with delivery in mind, the MV Power Platform can be transported via a standard semi-truck and unloaded by crane. Each configuration then can be installed on a concrete slab, vault or piers for maximum flexibility.

Snake Tray announces the Solar Snake Tray, the all-new weatherproof, hand-bendable cable conveyance that carries DC circuitry from solar panels to their terminations. The patented design (lobster trap principle) allows outdoor rated cable to be effortlessly installed while protecting it from rain, snow or hurricane force winds. Solar Snake Tray has built-in mounting rings every 4 in. and connects together with a single stainless steel connector. Snake Tray manufactures a wide variety of brackets to interface with any brand of solar panel racks including Snake Tray’s new ballasted all weather racks called Solar Snake Racks.

Snake Tray manufactures a series of innovative products for cable management and power distribution all designed to save on labor, time and materials.

The InstaRack ballasted solar racking system, manufactured by Sollega, is designed to reduce labor and shipping costs for low-slope flat roof solar installations. It’s manufactured from high-density polyethylene (HDPE) utilizing 35 percent recycled content with a built in UV inhibitor. InstaRack is available in tilt angles of 10 and 15 degrees. The modular design ensures compatibility with all solar panels 30-44 in. in width. Its one-piece molded unit design requires only one tool for installation, and uses readily available rails.

The Sollega QuickSnap, a new attachment method for PV modules developed in partnership, clips on the edge of the module with no hardware and snaps into the strut. The InstaRack is wind tunnel tested to 120 mph. Sollega provides array layout, design engineering services, as well as wind and ballast calculations.