Supplier portrait: Stäubli Electrical Connectors – Small components. Big impact.

Every so often we present one of our suppliers and partners on our blog.This time, we are introducing Stäubli, long-term partner of IBC SOLAR and world market leader in the field of photovoltaik connectors. The Swiss group Stäubli was founded in 1892 and is active worldwide. In addition to coupling, robotics and textile solutions,the company is also well known in the photovoltaic industry due to its high-quality plug connections for photovoltaic modules. Stäubli has already networked over 300 GW with their solutions. A remarkable number. And we at IBC SOLAR can now look back on more than 20 years of partnership with Stäubli (formerly Multi-Contact)! (more…)

Roofs, loads and the correct mounting system

The AeroFix base rail G2 Eco

I will never forget my father´s face when my sister-in-law walked across his newly laid parquet flooring with spiked heels on …This funny example reminds me of, how “not so funny” and also how important sufficient area is for the distribution of relative loads. Because the same situation also applies to PV systems on flat roofs as in these situations, heavy loads can play a role, too. Either caused by snow loads, e.g. in Scandinavia or in the Alps, or by high ballasting weight. As a Certified Surveyor for Photovoltaic Systems, I see more and more cases where installers are confronted with building insurance claims for damaged roof coverings caused by heavy loads. In the case of a commercial sized roof, the resulting claims against the installer can easily get up to a six-digit number of value. (more…)

Sabine, Victoria who will be next? The next storm is as certain as the sunrise

In recent years a series of storms have swept across Europe. The list comprises some prominent storms in Germany like hurricane Niklas (2015), storm Xavier (2017), hurricane Friederike (2018), hurricane Sabine, and storm Victoria (both in 2020). During the last hurricane named Sabine, winds reached speeds of up to 177 km/h. Even in the lowlands, speeds of around 150 km/h could still be measured. This is a good enough reason for us to take a closer look at the calculation of PV systems. Because one thing is for certain – there will be more hurricanes on the way!

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Static friction coefficient with AeroFix and AeroFlat

Static friction and spring scale

In the flat roof sector, aerodynamic mounting systems have evolved, especially for foil, bitumen, green and gravel roofs. The reason for this success is the simple assembly compared to other systems, as normally no roof penetrations have to be made and better load values are achieved through the aerodynamics. Instead, ballast is only applied depending on the project. In this context, the so-called static friction coefficient between the bracket and the roof cladding plays an important role in all aerodynamic systems on the market, for example in our IBC AeroFix and IBC AeroFlat systems, because it strongly influences the ballast. How this is determined exactly and what needs to be taken into account is explained in more detail below. (more…)

Module trends and technologies: Cast Mono

The photovoltaic market has increased significantly over the last decade. In 2015, the annual PV installation was over 50 GW and the solar cells made with Multi Crystalline Silicon (mc-Si) had a market share of nearly 60 %. This year, however, the majority of European countries noticed a significant switch to Mono Crystalline Silicon with ratios of ~70 % in comparison to 30 % mc-Si. Regardless of the technology, one aspect is absolutely clear: the market is still going the direction where customers worldwide require higher efficiencies. The prices, however, have to stabilise or should get lower. By fulling this demand, cell and solar module producers are required to provide a solution to offer higher efficiencies at the same or lower level of prizing. In Sep 2018 we introduced you to our new module technologies which includes Half Cell, Multi Busbar or optimized cell connector like LRF. This time we want to take a closer look the Cast Mono technology.  (more…)