RFI supplied a large scale solar system for Hawking Electrical Energy Solution’s installation on a Brisbane high-rise office building. The team were tasked to replaced an aged and damaged solar system with a new high quality solution.
The Edward street building was the first building integrated (BIPV) solar system in Australia and was completed in 2001. Due to the length of time installed and severe weather events (such as storms and hail), the system had deteriorated with age.The building owners had not had a working solar system for around 5 years, so the new installation was designed to breathe new life into this forgotten BIPV first by replacing damaged equipment, and connecting the new panels to the electricity grid.
A suitable solution was required that would:
- Use modules that offered high shade tolerance to counter the affects of shading from neighbouring high rises & the upper section of the building.
- Maximise PV harvest in the strong Brisbane sun.
- Utilise thin film technology to maintain the aesthetics from the previous installation.
- Use an inverter capable of countering shading affects.
Shade Tolerance The high-rise rooftop often experiences shading effects in the afternoon sun as a result of the neighbouring high-rises in the Brisbane CBD. For this reason, to maximize daily harvest, the Stion modules were perfect due to their ability to generate more kWh in shaded environments compared to traditional crystalline modules. Coupled with SMA’s OptiTrac software, the array performance was significantly optimised.
Sub-Tropical Climate As Brisbane is a high temperature environment, on a typical Summer day a crystalline module will lose at least 10% of its possible yield just through temperature loss. However, Stion will only lose ~6.5% in the same conditions due to its excellent high temperature performance.
All black, sleek design By using Stion modules, the installation could seemlessly blend into building aesthetics.