S-5!’s direct-attach™ solar PV mounting solution eliminates the need for rails and facilitates more cost-effective and less complicated installations with its PVKIT®2.0.
PVKIT enables solar installers to mount solar panels directly onto the metal roof with S-5!’s clamps and brackets. The PVKIT’s pre-assembled components considerably reduce installation time and cost for PV mounting using only 3 components rather than 8 or 10 as with railed systems. It reduces material handling and logistics significantly on and off-site while providing better load distribution into the roof and substructure.
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“Having a background in the metal roofing industry for 50 years, our staff understands the load-carrying capabilities of a metal roof and sees little need for the PV industry’s convention of using rails on metal roofs,” says Dustin Haddock, S-5! Vice President of Research & Development. “In most cases, there is no need to put a rail on a metal roof because the ribs, corrugations or seams can carry loads just as well as rails, so the PVKIT marries the modules directly to the roof. We have only to lay modules in landscape orientation— 90 degrees to the roof’s own inherent rails.”
S-5! first created this entirely new market and its own distinctive category of engineered, manufactured metal roof attachments in 1992. Haddock has been working with installers and EPC’s to increase awareness of its PVKIT — providing a rail-free approach for standing seam, R-Panel, and corrugated metal roofs.
Haddock recently visited a 60 kWp site with one of S-5!’s customers using the new PVKIT 2.0 for the first time. He spent two hours with the team laying down modules and lending a few tips at the start of the job. The installer reported to Haddock: “Once we understood how the system worked — which was picked up incredibly quickly by the whole team — we were installing columns of 17 modules every 21 minutes.”
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“That’s one module every 74 seconds. This sort of efficiency and speed is absolutely game-changing for the solar industry,” says Haddock. “Not only does it dramatically increase labor efficiency, but it delivers more than 30%+ cost savings over rail framing and 85% reduction in weight. That installation team was blown away with the system and never wants to use rail again! And we hear these comments over and over again.”
Lower added load is extremely helpful as an existing building may not have been designed to carry much additional weight. Haddock explains that the S-5! mountings result in a weight of around 3 lbs (1.5kg)/kWp compared with around 19 lbs (8.6kg)/kWp for a railed mounting structure — not to mention 25% more uniform wind and dead load distribution.
“You can carry all components needed for a 10kW system up the ladder in your backpack with a gun and one or two driver tips,” continues Haddock. “A 200kw system transports to the job in the trunk of your car instead of a semi-trailer.”
Another advantage is simplicity of installation.
“[There’s] no field cutting of rails at roof transitions, no time-consuming rail layout time. The direct-attach method also enables greater flexibility in module layout and placement, because metal roofs have so many ‘rails’ already built in.”
— Dustin Haddock, S-5! Vice President of Research & Development
The proof is in the deployment. Dustin Haddock tells us that S-5! has a global portfolio of more than 3.5 Gigawatts of rooftop solar arrays to date. The S-5! PVKIT and other S-5! attachment products are available and in use in more than 40 countries worldwide.
System design is easy.
Clearly, S-5! is a great fit for our BayWa r.e. U.S. solar distribution line card. Whether you’re a residential installer serving upmarket homeowners or an EPC contractor delivering commercial and industrial projects with metal roofs in mind, keep S-5! in your sights. For more information, visit www.s-5.com.
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