Solar racking and tracking specialist Arctech has completed a wind tunnel laboratory at its headquarters in Kunshan, Jiangsu Province, China, that will be used to test the effects of wind on its trackers.
Solar trackers are widely known as rigid structural parts, but the main axis of a solar tracker is susceptible to deformation caused by vertical bending, torsion and complex natural conditions in different regions, the company says. The advanced analytic tests will aid in reliable tracker design as the mounting of ultra-high-power modules involves higher wind loads added to the trackers.
Equipped with testing capabilities of structural static pressure and structural dynamic response, the laboratory can test at wind speeds of up to 30 meters per second – a speed that would cover most likely real-world scenarios. The technical database will be leveraged as the source of basic design parameters for product design, R&D and product structure design verification in the future.
By applying the technical database for concept design and structure design for product, the wind tunnel laboratory will allow the company to mimic different local environments worldwide.
“We believe that the launch of the wind tunnel laboratory will continuously enhance Arctech’s presence in lowering LCOE of PV power plants, as the lab will enable us to carry out feasible and compliant wind tunnel tests for accurate aerodynamic information and optimize the design for mitigating wind-related risk on trackers and equipping trackers with better wind resistance capability,” says Arctech’s Bruce Wang.