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Open Source Racking for Solar Cell Modules
Combine bolts and wire along with 3-D printable brackets to radically reduce the cost of solar cell rackingTechForTrade
A free software license that requires that all work based on this must also be free software as in freely remixable and sharable by anyone under the same license but may be used commercially.
Solar photovoltaic costs have dropped so much that now the racking costs more than the solar panels for small systems. To fix that we made a 3-D printable racking design that slashes the costs 80%.
The X-wire racking system is made up of corner brackets and crossing steel cables . In any size X-wire system there are nine separate bracket configurations : (a) left back, (b) middle back, (c) right back, (d) left middle, (e) center, (f) right middle, (g) left front, (h) middle front, and (i) left front. The brackets are designed in OpenSCAD and can be customized. The prototype X-wire rack was fabricated using a RepRap 3-D printer in PLA (as shown in Figures) and stabilized using a steel threaded rod. brackets could couple the rod and bracket into a single component.
For the full BOM and details about the system and testing see for ground mounted systems for development: https://www.academia.edu/29779538/3-DPrintingSolarPhotovoltaicRackinginDevelopingWorld and for roof mounted systems see: https://www.academia.edu/12442737/TotalU.S.costevaluationoflow-weighttension-basedphotovoltaicflat-roofmounted_racking
Materials and methods
For the full BOM and details see the papers linked above- Print at 100% in fill for mechanical strength. If using PLA it must be coated/painted to prevent breakdown.
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