The requirements of solar parks are increasingly changing, with significant consequences for the tracker technologies used. There has recently been a discussion in the industry about raising the risk category from the current class I. This usually means an increase in the project-specific design wind speed for the structural calculation of the tracker.
Instead of the designed wind speed of 132 mph (3-sec-gust) in risk category I, category II is already designed for a design wind speed of 141 mph (3-sec-gust). For many trackers manufacturers, this is achieved by using significantly more material, up to 20 to 30%. In high wind regions, it can lead, in the worst case, to the underlying tracker technology no longer being designed for this wind speed, for example.
This means that significantly higher wind speeds will have to be demonstrated for tracker systems in the future.
Another trend, especially for solar modules, is the increasing module size. Module lengths of over 245cm are no longer a rarity on the market. For a tracker, this firstly means a significantly higher force impact on the tracker structure itself and also the risk of microcracks in the solar modules, due to the bending of the solar modules and rail structure itself.