"Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

Jan 24, 2006 12:59 pm
"Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

I asked this question also on another forum, but hope here I'll get faster response.

   I'm working on designing a small (~1.5kW) solar system that will help "turn back the clock" on my meter.
   I have a garage wall (no windows, 20'x8') pointing in a perfect direction of the sun with no obstructions.
   Tricky part is panels mounting - 6 must "stand" on top row, and 4 must be "laying on the side" on the bottom to fit the availabe space.
   Any recommendations on how to mount them? Most mounting systems so far are designed for roofs, or single panel ground based. Here I need some kind of system that can be hooked to the wall. The bottom can be on the ground, if necessary.
   Also, how affected will be output (%) if the system is not angled toward the sky, but vertical?

   Thanks for any info you can provide.

Jan 25, 2006 09:28 pm
Re: "Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

I checked the dimensions and outputs of a few modules and found one that may work for your situation. The Matrix M-PW1250 135 watt module measures - 32" X 49" , if they are "laid down" on their 49" side you can get 3 high and 4 across. This would add upto 1620 watts. Not being perpendicular to the Sun you will not get full rated output. Probably only half of that. It might mean having an array mount rack custom made so that it is hinged on top with adjustable arms near the bottom but this way you could at least adjust the angle for the seasons. Of course they will still need to be in ful sunshine from 9:00am to 3:00pm. If the number of equivilent full rated charge hours was 4 this would net 6.48 kWhs a day. If your paying the national average of $0.08 a kWh they would save you about $0.50 a day. The price for 12- 125 watt matrix modules is $15,423.72 so it take about 84 years of such days to pay for the modules.
Personally, when PV module prices where staying more or less stable but performances and warranties were getting better they were a great idea but now that the industries has resorted to playing games such as inventing this so called "shortage" of raw materials, PV modules in my opinion are about as worthless as teets on boarhog!  
29 Posts
Feb 4, 2006 11:53 pm
Re: "Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

Vertical mounting of PV modules ??
Maybe during winter in Alaska it's perfect as the sun stands very low above the horizon, but in California ??
When the sun is nearly vertically during summer time and output could be max. your vertical mounted modules catch only a few % of this sunlight.
Does it pay off the high cost as PV module prices are increasing ??

Price increase is simple market logic : demand is higher than supply, so instead of mass production (economy of scale) decrease prices the excess in demand increases prices.
Because of heavy government subsidy especially in Germany and Japan (the price insensitive) demand has massivley increased. Who cares to pay more than 7$ per Watt for PV in Europe when their Utility corp have to buy all PV generated electricity for 57 EURO-cents (68 US-cents) per KWH ?!

Feb 5, 2006 10:55 am
Re: "Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

I think I know what you are saying in your second paragraph roland.
If I look at it in an overall, off beat way over the past three decades its sort of like that song -
"Good bye yellow brick road."
PV has become just another commodity to be manipulated in the stock market like so many pork bellies. The "BIG" thinkers have gotten a hold of it and now. PV's intent, which I believe was to liberate the consumer from a life time of being attached to the utilities and the subsequent montly bill, has all but been lost to the average "back to the land" or "self reliant" thinkers.

Makes me wonder what this future of PV will bring. PV falling within the right of public domain? When some poor slobs land will be taken away by the utilities/government and used for a mega PV array that the utilities can use the power from to charge a monthly fee that will earn the government revenues? The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the one. Its only logical... right?
I geuss we will just have to wait and see.
Personally, I would have rather seen a future were the indivdual used PV and other RE technologies to "harvest" their own energy needs from nature. I guess that way of thinking is all but gone also, depending on what region of our Earth one happens to be surviving on at this time in history.

29 Posts
Feb 8, 2006 08:51 pm
Re: "Question about Solar Panels Mounting"

When you see who are the main manufactures of PV modules you know there is a lot of money to be earned : the big Japanese Electro Multies (KC, Sanyo, Sharp...) now also GE is offering modules in Alt-E shop, and big Euro players are the Oil Multies Shell and BP who are searching alternatives for soon exausted Oil reserves. Do you expect altruistic pricing for environmental concerns from them Huh
So the hope to start cheap mass production with government subsidized private PV investment is ending in the coffers of some rich Production Multies on Taxpayers expense.
Another factor which is no price increase of the PV producers : most PV production happens outside USA (Japan, Shell in Europe and BP in Australia) so there is a currency exchange rate problem as some years ago 4 Euro per Watt was 3.3 US$ and today the same 4 Euro are 4.8 US$ per Watt (Japan similar for JPY exchange rate).
When you want to know the future of PV look at the Alt-E shop section Inverters - Grid intertie : a year ago the Sunnyboy 2500W was the standard tool even for bigger arrays, now you get many different brands and GTI's up to 100KW !! So the future is a government subsidized private PV electric generation for political decided KWH prices bought from the utility monopolies.  

Feb 9, 2006 12:03 am
Re: "Question about Solar Panels Mounting"


Do you expect altruistic pricing for environmental concerns from them Huh

(Altruistic: Showing unselfish concern for the welfare of others.)

"The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servent. We have created a society that honors the the servent and has forgotten the gift." - Albert Einstein

But to answer your question... no, and I never have. All throughout the history of humans there has been slavery. We all have embedded within us a notion of what slavery is. Most often it begins with events in our recent history but is not limited to that, there is ancient history as well. One could ask, "if I am a slave, then where are the chains that bind me?" The answer would depend on ones own perspective at the moment.
I believe there is little difference in a slave and an indentured servent. The indentured servent is led to believe that they could "buy" their own freedom where as the slave is not. So with this in mind... why would the holder of the indentured servent ever pay enough in "wages" so that the price of that freedom could be a true reality and not just a delusion? Its a morals question really.


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