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Brittmore Group Automation Enables “Simply Better” Installations

BTA Brittmore 3

BRITTMORE GROUP AUTOMATION ENABLES “SIMPLY BETTER” INSTALLATION OF STION FRAMELESS MODULES

Stion’s innovative frameless module design helps develop “Simply Better” solutions to customers with the following benefits:
  • better performance due to a lack of debris buildup at the edge of the module
  • no grounding requirements
  • increased packaging density and less weight resulting in lower transport and warehouse storage costs
  • lower cost and more streamlined manufacturing process
All of these benefits are passed onto installers and their clients, helping to lower turn-key installation costs and increase ROI.

To further enhance its frameless solution, Stion has teamed with the Brittmore Group, a field automation and robotics firm who has developed an automated process for installing frameless modules on ground mounts using an adhesive-based solution.

Brittmore Group’s process consists of on-site assembly of up to six frameless modules into panels via back-rails bonded with an ultra-fast cure silicone construction adhesive. The assembly process is monitored via multiple automated control systems to ensure quality control is maintained throughout the entire installation. As part of panelization, the modules are pre-wired, simplifying the DC stringing and reducing labor in the field.

Once the modules are panelized, the automated systems take over and no additional manual handling is required. The large form-factor panels are delivered to the robotic installation system located at the end of the rows. From there the panels are automatically shuttled out to their install positions using Brittmore’s fixed tilt racking system as an above ground transport track. This significantly reduces heavy equipment and personnel traffic in the array; no mud, no dust.

Each assembly area or “PAC” and PV Install System will panelize and deliver over 240 Stion modules an hour, or more than 270 kW per system per 7.5 hr. shift. The Brittmore system is designed to run multiple shifts per system and up to six systems per site delivering multi-megawatt per day install rates under a wide range of weather conditions. This results in completion of the structural portion of the project in one half the time and over 10% cost savings on the overall project when using frameless modules.

Brittmore Group’s system:

  • Dramatically reduces labor costs and install times improving cash flow and ROI
  • Eliminates mounting clips, reducing the stress on individual modules and further reducing module soiling
  • Simplifies logistics with centralized material handling
  • Reduces site grading/repair and dust abatement

Case Study: A “Simply Better” Installation

A recent Stion/Brittmore Group installation showed how well the system performs, even during adverse weather conditions that would temporarily halt most other installers. This project used Stion STL-150 modules panelized and prewired in a six high landscape configuration and mounted on Brittmore’s SolWay GM2 racking.

Throughout the build, the site was subjected to heavy rains producing ankle-deep mud that could have caused severe problems. But with the PAC operating in a large tent, workers and materials kept dry and continued panelization without delay. Finished panels were delivered by forklift to the PV Install System at the row ends via a finished access road, avoiding the water-saturated soil throughout the site. The PV Install Systems continued to operate, only being halted during the worst deluges to prevent loss of traction by the high-speed delivery shuttle on the rack system. When the clouds parted, the site was fully installed, ready for electrical connection.

This partnership between Stion Solar and Brittmore Group provides unique insight into the future of solar power. It shows how automating the entire process, from panel manufacture to installation, can increase efficiency, lower costs, and maintain a focus on quality. We believe that this new “Simply Better” approach will help solar energy overtake traditional generating resources and strengthen the ROI for solar energy systems.

For more information, see www.Brittmore.com

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