Ground-Mounted Solar Panels

A popular installation approach is ground-mounted solar.  In situations where you have some ground area to work with free of shade, and when you want the array off your roof, consider this option.

About 30% of our solar installations for farms and homes are ground-mounted.  We have installed some of the largest residential ground-mounted solar arrays in Illinois for homes with large electric bills.

Ground mounted solar considerations are economical installations and eliminate the need for rooftop work.  Open frame structures allow greater ventilation of the panels improving electrical efficiency of the solar array since solar cell efficiency does drop under hot summer temperatures.

Other considerations when considering a ground-mounted solar array are summarized below:

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Array Configuration

Array Configuration

Our typical ground mount installation features are available in 3, 4 or 5 panels per column layout.  Most installations today are 5 panels per column since that yields the lowest installed cost.

Rack Construction

Rack Construction

A popular option is an engineered 2” galvanized steel pipe rack secured to the earth via concrete foundations.  After the pipe frame is construction, rails are fastened to the frame and end and mid clamps secure the solar panels to the frame.  A typical construction sequence is shown in the photos.

Tilt Angle

Tilt Angle

The typical ground mount array tilt angle is 25 to 35 degrees and lower tilt angles are possible.  For smaller farm and residential ground mounted arrays, a fixed axis is most common and cost effective.

Inverter & Electrical Accessories

Inverter & Electrical Accessories

The rack structure forms and ideal support for mounting inverters, combiner boxes, electrical subpanels and related balance of system (BOS) components.

Array Physical Size

Array Physical Size

With the typical ground mount array featuring panels in landscape with the larger format 72 cell modules, each row of panels is approximately 76” wide, or about 6-foot, 6-inches  With 5 panels per row, the rated capacity per row is usually over 1.2 kW (DC).   A 10-column ground mount with 50-panels overall (5 panels per column) would be rated over 15 kW.  The overall array from side-to-side is approximately sixty-six feet.  The front-to-rear of the array is about 16 feet.

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