Soltec introduces hail defense algorithm for solar trackers


Soletc, a global solar tracking solution provider, announced it has released a new hail defense algorithm for mitigating 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.

Research suggests that hail begins to damage solar modules at starting at diameters of 3 cm, causing both invisible and visible damage to occur. Starting at 4 cm, the percentage of visible damage increases significantly.

A pv magazine USA webinar session revealed that hail risk mitigation is a common problem in the “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.

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.

Read more about Soltec’s hail algorithm and the threat of hail damage in a whitepaper.

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