12/30/2016
23.25 kW System
Description

We are not done yet - about 50% through the project but wanted to share some pictures of what we have installed so far.  48 of 93 panels are mounted and wired in.  This is all being mounted on a newly constructed barn.  Two of the arrays are on a nice slope.  The largest array is on a 10:12 slope which we expect to take a bit longer.

 

The installation moves smoothly once the techs get familiar with all the pieces and how to adjust the panels and mounts as they lay them in place.  We have learned a few things with this type of mounting system.  Good planning and straight chalk lines make everything drop in place nicely.

 

IMG_20161226_160744.jpgFirst ArrayIMG_20161226_164009.jpgFirst ArrayIMG_20161226_164710.jpgThe first and smallest array of the system, 8 wide with 2 rowsIMG_20161226_170211.jpgFirst and smallest array complete. Mounts in place for next array above.IMG_20161230_121830.jpgIMG_20161230_121854.jpgHalfway through the second array. Arrays separated in the middle for thermal expansion.

23.25 kW System

by on ‎12-30-2016 05:09 PM

We are not done yet - about 50% through the project but wanted to share some pictures of what we have installed so far.  48 of 93 panels are mounted and wired in.  This is all being mounted on a newly constructed barn.  Two of the arrays are on a nice slope.  The largest array is on a 10:12 slope which we expect to take a bit longer.

 

The installation moves smoothly once the techs get familiar with all the pieces and how to adjust the panels and mounts as they lay them in place.  We have learned a few things with this type of mounting system.  Good planning and straight chalk lines make everything drop in place nicely.

 

IMG_20161226_160744.jpgFirst ArrayIMG_20161226_164009.jpgFirst ArrayIMG_20161226_164710.jpgThe first and smallest array of the system, 8 wide with 2 rowsIMG_20161226_170211.jpgFirst and smallest array complete. Mounts in place for next array above.IMG_20161230_121830.jpgIMG_20161230_121854.jpgHalfway through the second array. Arrays separated in the middle for thermal expansion.

Comments
by
on ‎12-30-2016 05:37 PM

dang, thats nice. 23 system is a huge system.

by
on ‎12-30-2016 05:44 PM

At first I was going to ask why microinverters for a system that size, but I get it with the different slopes and potential shading after seeing the pics.  Nice job and thanks for sharing!

by
on ‎12-31-2016 10:12 PM

microinverters are the ticket for residential solar systems IMHO. Lots of redundancy. No single point that can knock out your entire array!

 

by
on ‎12-31-2016 10:29 PM

True, and when you have nearly 100 inverters, you have a very robust system.  You could have done 3 or 4 string inverters, but it isn't a meaningful improvement on either approach.

by
on ‎01-03-2017 10:18 AM

Hi, is it possible we can see the head-end or control boxes for this system? 

Nice work!

by
on ‎01-04-2017 01:43 PM

Very nice!  I just did a 20kW system (80 panels) on my property.  I plan to do a "sunMAX Story" for it as well once I get the last few issues worked out.

 

Have you had any issues with any of the 48 inverters you have online so far?

by
on ‎01-04-2017 02:06 PM

MI based systems are also very good for much larger systems, like 100kW or more.   High voltage string inverters (they make them now that can take 1500 volts DC) are very dangerous to work on, and the more single points of failure you have the less reliable they are.   And the price of MIs is now low enough there's little advantage to string based systems.   In the redundancy vs. concentrated point of failutre debate I'll take redundancy every time...

Jim

by
on ‎01-04-2017 04:07 PM

@pclausen  No problems with microinverters yet.  We have not placed all of them online.  We do check to see that we can scan them with a BLE scanner once we lay them out on the roof and they have some sun.

by
on ‎01-04-2017 04:12 PM

Not to mention the reduced wiring and fusing needs for AC vs DC.

 

With the MI putting out AC at 240V the wire sizes are much smaller.  Electricians know how to wire 240 and don't want to mess with DC, fusing, large wires, combining busses, etc.  Inspectors are all very well versed on AC requirements.  Everything needed for AC wiring is available at local supply houses.

 

I'd say 95% of the time the MI would be my choice.

by
‎01-05-2017 04:47 AM - edited ‎01-05-2017 05:22 AM

Glad to hear you have not had any issues with your inverters.  I had an unusually high infant mortality rate with mine.  Replacing failed inverters in the middle of a roof mounted array is no fun and about the only negative I can think off with MI based system.

 

I will say that Ubiquiti has been great to work with regarding the issues I've had, and provided me with early access to unreleased firmware for both the MIs and Gateways.  Can't go into details since I'm under a NDA, but I'm really liking the direction things are headed towards.