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Dual Axis Solar Tracker: Enhancing Solar Panel Efficiency With Dual Axis Tracking Technologyc

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By Author: Ben
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Introduction Dual Axis Solar Tracker

Dual axis solar tracking is a technology that significantly improves the efficiency of solar panels by allowing them to continuously face the sun throughout the day. By rotating on two axes, dual axis trackers can capture up to 25-30% more energy than fixed-tilt or single-axis tracking systems. This makes them an attractive option for commercial and utility-scale solar installations seeking to maximize returns on investment.

Dual Axis Solar Tracker Work

Dual Axis Solar Tracker are equipped with motors and controls that enable them to accurately track the movement of the sun from east to west across the sky each day. The trackers rotate on horizontal and vertical axes, with one axis adjusting the tilt angle and the other axis changing the azimuth or orientation.

Sensors are used to detect the position of the sun and communicate positional corrections back to the tracking motors in real-time. Common sensor technologies include solar irradiation sensors, light dependent resistors (LDRs), and solar cells. The motors then precisely align the solar panels to directly ...
... face the sun's rays throughout daylight hours.

At dawn and dusk, the panels tilt at lower angles to capture more diffuse sunlight when the sun is near the horizon. At midday, they stand at steeper angles perpendicular to the sun's position high in the sky. This two-dimensional movement maximizes energy absorption compared to panels mounted at fixed angles.

Improving Performance and Economics

By continuously pointing solar panels at the sun, dual axis trackers can improve energy yield by 25-30% over fixed tilt systems. This extra production directly translates to increased revenues over the lifespan of a project. Independent power producers value the payback on the higher upfront costs of trackers, which averages 1-3 years depending on location and project specifics.

In regions with long daylight hours and abundant sunshine, like the southwestern US, dual axis trackers may even produce over 30% more energy annually than fixed tilt. Their performance advantage grows substantially in climates receiving direct normal irradiation levels above 5 kWh/m2/day. Trackers essentially wring out every last kW-hr the sun has to offer at a site.

Advanced designs also optimize structural material usage, lowering the cost per watt further. Trackers are engineered for easy assembly, maintenance access, and 25+ year operational lifespans to maximize the long-term value proposition. Proper installation and software controls safeguard reliability under harsh weather conditions as well.

Commercial and Utility Applications

Dual axis solar tracking is most commonly applied at the utility-scale, where even small percentage gains in production mean massive increases in overall energy generation. Trackers unlock higher capacity values that support larger project sizes, allowing developers and IPPs to benefit from economies of scale.

They have also found widespread adoption for commercial and industrial rooftop solar. Large regional retailers, manufacturers, warehouses, and office parks gain a compelling ROI by generating 10-30% more of their own power needs annually. Plus dual axis trackers provide a greener identity that appeals to many business customers.

Technical Challenges and Solutions

Of course, dual axis trackers do introduce some technical complexities compared to fixed systems. However, the industry has developed robust solutions:

- Wind loading is carefully addressed through advanced aerodynamic designs certified for high wind speeds. Bracing and stowing modes protect systems during storms.

- Corrosion resistance and durability are engineered through selection of long-lasting materials like aluminum, galvanized and stainless steel for trackers installed anywhere.

- Control systems seamlessly coordinate motion between horizontal and vertical axes for precise sun tracking with redundancy backups to ensure uptime.

- Stiff mounting structures evenly distribute weight to withstand vibration and prevent component fatigue over decades of use.

Overall, as tracking technology continues innovating, its benefits will only grow more compelling versus stationary panels. Dual axis tracking maximizes the potential of every field, acre, and rooftop to generate clean, low-cost solar power.

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