Soltec introduces hail defense algorithm for solar trackers


From pv magazine USA

Soltec, a Spain-based solar tracking solution provider, has released a new hail defense algorithm to mitigate damage to solar facilities.

Hailstorms, often unpredictable in nature and destructive to solar panels, pose a challenge to solar infrastructure. In 2021, hail-related losses exceeded $1 billion across the United States.

A pv magazine USA webinar session revealed that hail-risk mitigation is a common problem in “Hail Alley,” a broad region encompassing around six states from the Dakotas to Texas, which often experience five or more days each year of catastrophic hail. Climate change has created patterns of irregularity as extreme weather increasingly crops up in regions bordering hail-prone regions.

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Soltec’s research reveals that the risk of module damage due to hail impact is most often due to the direct and perpendicular strike of hailstones to the front glass of the module.

The company introduced its Hail Algorithm, combining prediction and detection to direct the panels to angle at a stowed position, protecting them from direct impacts on the face of the module. Stowed solar panels are angled steeply when a hail event is predicted or detected, leading to lowered risk of damage.

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