Solar Builder

MAY-JUN 2018

Solar Builder focuses on the installation/construction of solar PV systems. We cover the latest PV technology (modules, mounting, inverters, storage, BOS) and equip installers/contractors with tips and tools to make informed purchasing decisions.

Issue link: http://digital.solarbuildermag.com/i/979544

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SOLARBUILDERMAG.COM | 19 past the life expectancy of the modules themselves. With Solar Raceway, the only bill of material items needed are the base, the bottom tray and the cover. Each component is designed to snap and lock into each other. Once the base is attached you would then snap the bottom tray into position. Now it's time to drop your wires in and snap the top cover in place. Done. The closed system is secure, while offering protection from the elements and rodents, but the top can be quickly removed for maintenance access. Picture an installer snapping in the trays, laying out the wiring of the entire system, testing every- thing and then snapping in the covers as a final step. Even if you don't wait until the end, or find a connector issue down the road, the covers can be popped off to address any issues. Versatility is another key benefit of the system. "We wanted it to be designed so that it can go up a wall vertically," says Sal Anselmo, president of Solar Raceway. "We have a slot within the raceway in which the supplied wire retainer clips can be located, so you can take it from the roof, go off a rise area and continue, even install it upside down." The tough exterior doesn't mean rigidity. Chad Carta, COO of Solar Raceway, says the Raceway comes in three sizes (1.5, 2.5 and 3.5 in.), two lengths (8 and 12 ft) and is agnostic to racking and module selection. So, there are many options in terms of layout. The size will depend on how you are using the raceway and what fill ratio will be needed. The 1.5-in. size was launched this year and came about due to a demand from smaller arrays and cross-between. On the other end, if you need 5 in. of diameter, two systems can be run side by side to accommodate that need. "Some installers use it as a pure conduit replacement because they are tired of pulling wires and run it all the way down the back of the array," Carta says. "Or some use a larger size and run perpendicular to the array where all of the wires that clipped on the backside of the panel feed to one central tray that will run back to the inverter." The Solar Raceway is already moving beyond rooftops. One no-brainer segment is carports if for no other reason than the aesthetics and how easy it is to install upside down. But it's also finding a home in ground-mount systems. "We've been surprised by the interest in ground mount applications," Carta says. "These are projects that need to meet certain codes depending on the state or village, and they don't like hanging wires or leaving them unprotected. This system protects the wires, so they don't have to put a fence around the site. We were able to reduce the wire management for a large ground-mount system by 50 percent — run right down the middle, tied in with the rubber grommets and then just a short lead from the J-boxes." Chris Crowell is the managing editor of Solar Builder.

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