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How to Install a Dual-Axis Solar Tracking Unit (DAT)

This page is updated as new information is added.

1) DAT LOCATION ::

First you should install a DAT in an area that Captures the most amount of Sun as possible, preferably without shading from Trees & Buildings etc.

In the Sydney region a DAT installed in a clear area free of shading, will harvest approx. 11+ hours of Peak Sunlight, the further South or North of the Equator you live the more energy a DAT will be harvested, due to the axis of the sun through the sky!

That is the main reasons Fixed Roof-Top Solar Racking can only capture 4~5 hours of Peak sunlight per day, as the remaining sunlight is at such an obscure angle, it amounts to very little energy being Harvested.

2) DAT Foundation ::

Installing the foundation for a DAT unit is considered the most difficult part of a DAT installation.

There are two main types of foundations;

  1. Concrete Foundation Pole: The simplest Foundation designed, recommended for a DAT-8 or smaller unit, where a 60cm Wide x 160cm Deep hole is required, there should be 30cm of concrete under the bottom Flange to take the DAT vertical load, should be to simply stop the DAT tipping over in heigh wind conditions, the larger the DAT, the larger and heavier the concrete foundation needs to be.
  2. Concrete Foundation Block: Designed to simply stop the DAT tipping over in heigh wind conditions, the larger the DAT, the larger and heavier the concrete foundation needs to be.
  3. Spider Ground Screw Foundation: This is the latest & greatest foundation type, as it acts like the roots on a Tree, spreading the load across a larger area, and this foundation type does NOT require any Cement, obviously the Ground Screws hold the DAT unit in place, and ground screws are manufactured for Sand, Soil, Clay & even Rock.   The Ground Screws are screwed into the ground with either a Portable geared, High-Torque electric drill or a commercial Hydraulic driver mounted on a, Excavator/Tractor make the job a lot easier & Quicker.

3) Electrical Cabling & Conduit ::

Electrical Cabling can be done several ways, the main two are both buried 60cm in the ground, with a Orange Warning tape usually laid 40cm down to Warning for anyone digging that there are power cables below.

If running 240V AC Wiring to your DAT, and Solar DC cabling back to your premises, it is better to lay Orange Conduit, as conduit allows you to add additional wiring if you later decide to add additional DAT units or solar ground racking.

With regards to XLPE cable if it is carrying a voltage above 110 volts DC or 50 Volts AC, it must be in Orange conduit and buried to 60cm complete with Orange Safety tape at 40cm to mark its location.   If the XLPE cable is steel wired armoured, it is permissible to bury it direct in-ground without conduit, but still requires the Orange Safety tape.

4) DAT Performance ::

Yes, Dual-axis Solar Trackers are more complex and hence more expensive to purchase & Install, however, the big pay-off is a DAT uses 1/3 of the solar panels as Fixed Racking to harvest the same energy, eg. a DAT-8 (8 panels) harvests the same energy as 24 solar panels on a Fixed Tilted racking, due Peak sun only strikes Fixed roof-top modules for 4~5 hours per day, where a DAT captures 11+ hours per day.

Our DAT Kits are purposely over-engineered, each DAT come with GPS, 24V motors, east~west Tracking via heavy duty Slew-bearing & north~south Tracking via a Linear Actuator.

These DAT studies shows how several Dual-axis Trackers commonly re-pay the initial investment cost in 3~6 years, depending on your system, this is done by replacing your power bill and self consuming all the power you produce, this can only be done when you also incorporate Energy Storage.  Then the system owner will no longer have a power bill for the next 30+ years, obviously using the correct energy storage is the turn-key part of a system.

What great about a Energy Storage: This allows you to first & foremost store the excess energy you harvest/produce for later consumption.   So basically, batteries are charged to full capacity first - then during the day you have the choice to automatically sell any excess energy to the State Grid for a feed-in tariff - This simple means that at sun set you will only be consuming your own energy from the Batteries until sun-rise, thus eliminate paying the retail price for power after sun set & during the day - That is how you become energy independent !

Installing a Dual Axis Trackers & Equipment

Dual Axis Movements. Dual Axis Movements.   Dual Axis Movements.

A Foundation Pole should have 20~30cm of cement under the Bottom flange, this is to stop sinking.

 

If using an Auger a 50~60cm diameter foundation hole is required, and should be 30cm deeper than the foundation pole length.

 

The top Flange of the foundation pole should be just above ground level Foundation Pole in a block of Cement, to provide the DAT with the best possible stability.

Dual Axis Slew Drive.   Dual Axis Slew Drive.   Dual Axis Slew Drive.

DAT-4 Unit:

Wide stand, with 90cm Mast, +90cm Tilt Mast.

Click here to see DAT-4 Kit.

 

DAT-4 Unit:

Narrow stand unit, morning angle position, with 130cm Mast, +90cm Tilt Mast.

 

DAT-8 Unit:

8x 60cell Solar Panels with 90cm Mast, with Slew Bearing and Linear Actuator.

NEW Dual Axis Tracker.   NEW Dual Axis Tracker.   NEW Dual Axis Tracker.

DAT-15 in Stow position

 

Spider Foundation

Dina-Bolt to Concrete slab.

 

Ground Screw Foundation

Foundation for Soil, Clay or Rock.

NEW Dual Axis Tracker.  

Soil Ground Screw.

Rock Ground Screw.

  NEW Dual Axis Tracker.

Rotational Stop Censor:

inc. Wires, Bolts & Bracket.

   

WIND Speed Indicator:

inc. Wires, bolts & Bracket.

Ground Earth Screws

Ground Screws are manufactured in various lengths, diameters and suitable for different ground conditions from Sand, Soil, Clay and special Rock screws are available.

Page last updated: 21-Oct-2019.

 
 
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