Sunday, November 15, 2009

Solar panels and 2x4 wood

Alright, so the picture of a crate wasn't a great way to show what the panels are like :-)

Here is Matt holding one of the panels, well keeping it from falling over at least.

It is about 6 1/2 feet wide, as you are looking at it, and about 3 1/4 feet tall. Two of them will be stacked in this orientation on each rack. So each rack will have a roughly 6 1/2 foot square facing the sun. So, about 42 square feet of collector will be on each rack. There will be 7 racks, so that is about 294 square feet of total collector. With the racks having some space between them, the array will be around 49 feet long.

The racks will be bolted to concrete piers embedded in the ground. To place the bolts in exactly the right positions so that the aluminum frame will mount on them, we are constructing wood frames that will hold the bolts in the proper position. We will place the frame over the concrete while it is wet, and push the bolts into the concrete. This will ensure that as the concrete sets up, the bolts will be vertical, and spaced correctly. We had previously bought the wood for this, and cut it. Then the size of the panels changed, so we had to go get more wood and cut it to the correct lengths. We should be able to make use of the scraps as well, but this was a little frustrating.

 Here is dad trimming up the new boards, so they are the correct length for the frames.

Newt expected the contractors to work on the footings tomorrow, so maybe tomorrow evening I will have photos of concrete to show.

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