Northside Roofing - 70Kw Solar System
Electro Systems submitted the initial application for the 70Kw system to Energex who were unsupportive of the project and asked for a resubmission. There were 14 other users on the same part of the network and it was important there be no interference with those users. Also, the solar installation was not to interfere with the remainder of the network.
Energex has complex parameters to test the design of large solar systems. These parameters can make the larger projects untenable. After discussions between Mark Gwyn from Northside Roofing and Kevin Lowe from Electro Systems a decision was made to reduce the application to a 30 kW system. This comprised of 3 x 10Kw inverters. Each 10Kw inverter drawing power from 40 x 250 Watt panels. After Mark Gwyn accepted Energex Terms and Conditions Electro Systems were able to commence the project.
An initial assessment of the layout of the panels and the design of the system was undertaken. Ideally, solar panels should be north facing to optimise the sun’s energy however roof constraints required the panels to be on the East and West slopes of the building (16 degrees off North). To counteract this orientation the number of panels were increased. There would be 45 panels for each 10Kw inverter, 3 Strings of 15, one east facing, the second one on the ridge of the roof, east and west and the third one on the west face of the roof. This would allow for the 3 inverters to generate at full capacity.
Panels were not tilted to point north as this would have reduced roof space and prevented the panels being located in the designated areas. There had been considerable time spent in detailing the design and layout of the panels and it was important that there was no deviation. There was also another challenge to face with a sign running down the middle of the roof. This sign would interfere with the performance of the panels so it was important to factor the sign into the design as well.
Once satisfied with the design, Electro Systems began implementing the safety systems to allow for panels to be safely installed on the roof. There was a total of 135 panels to be mounted on the roof along with brackets, clamps, isolators, wiring, all of which had to be installed and completed in a safe manner. The roof of the building was a minimum 8 metre fall from working height. Additional protective features were required to meet the Australian Standard AS5033. This was due to each string incorporating extra panels and the individual output of each string exceeding the 600 Volt limit.
All cables were run unobtrusively through the factory, up onto the roof and distributed to each string of panels, running back down to the inverters located on ground level in a storage room adjacent to the main electrical switchboard. This switchboard was upgraded to enable integration of the solar power to connect to the grid.
Electro Systems used all quality components including Canadian Solar 250W panels, SMA Inverters, and ABB DC Isolators. To minimise the voltage drop due to the length of cables, 6mm DC cable to the solar panels was used.
The system was tested and commissioned. The transition went smoothly and without incident with the system performing impressively. By 10.30 am the next morning the solar panels were generating the full 30Kw.
Feedback from Mark Gwyn, owner of Northside Roofing Pty Ltd
“Three months ago we were randomly selected by the State Government to have our solar system audited and not a single defect was found and in fact the auditor made comment that the solar system installed by Electro Systems, was of the highest quality materials and one of the best workmanship installations they have ever seen.
When Electro Systems originally quoted our Solar System, they carefully assessed our monthly electricity bill of approximately $2700 and confidently advised me that my business would save 50% of this cost. I am very happily surprised that my monthly electricity bill has been reduced to an average monthly spend of $1100 saving me more than the 50% they first predicted.
Electro Systems after sales service is impeccable and coupled with the high quality parts they provide; I can feel confident that my business has no electrical concerns at all. I would highly recommend Electro Systems to any business or individual for every type of electrical service you may require.”
Find out more about industrial solar power.