German company SOLON is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of solar panel systems, or PV modules. Working together closely with SOLON, we developed a new solution that allows these modules to be installed on roofs. The entire process, from initial contact through to actual production, took 12 months to complete.
Lightweight plastic solution required
SOLON was looking for a lightweight plastic solution that could be installed in a number of different ways on industrial flat roofs. Other requirements included an optimum weight distribution and a minimal installation time without the need for tools (plug & play).
Optimum weight distribution and minimal installation time
Basic concept, product design and initial calculations
When SOLON contacted HSV TMP it already had a basic concept. The first step was to develop this together to obtain a feasible product design. We then performed strength and rigidity calculations on the basis of this design to make sure the product would meet all the customer’s requirements and expectations.
Feasibility check and selection of mould builder
During the next phase we examined the feasibility of the design in further detail with the help of flow studies and warpage analyses. At the same time we went in search of a mould builder in China and found a suitable partner.
The largest mould weighs 48 tonnes
Large components, heavy moulds
One of the aspects that made this project so unusual was the size of the components. For the largest of these, a mount measuring 2.20 x 1.40 metres, a mould was built incorporating 15 gates. The largest mould that we use for SOLON weighs as much as 48 tonnes.
Outturn samples, adjustment and finishing of moulds
After the initial outturn samples had been assessed in China, in the presence of both SOLON and HSV TMP, we made a number of changes. The moulds then underwent further finishing and a second sample moulding took place, which proved to be a success.
The approved moulds were shipped to our factories in Leeuwarden and Ede, after which production could get under way. And SOLON is delighted with the result, as it now has the flexible, lightweight and easy-to-install system it was looking for.