Guaranteed Stress-Free Solar Installation
What is a Rooftop Solar Installation? A rooftop solar installation is a solar power plant installed on top of the roof of a commercial, industrial or residential establishment or on the roof of any institution. The solar power plant we are talking about would be a photovoltaic solar power plant comprising the ubiquitous bluish-black solar panels. However, much more goes into the rooftop solar power plant than the solar panels. It will invariably comprise inverters, power cables, earthing cables and pits, switchgear, combiners etc.
How Does a Rooftop Solar Power Plant Work? A rooftop solar power plant converts the sunlight into electricity using a phenomenon from Physics called the photoelectric effect. Hereafter things become a bit complicated. Because the solar power plant depends on natural sunlight to generate electricity, solar energy generated depends on several related natural parameters like where is the rooftop solar power plant located? What is the area of solar panels exposed to sunlight? How is the weather in the area? How is the pollution? How many sunny days are there is a year? What is the efficiency of the inverter? What is the distance from the rooftop solar panels to the inverter? And several other related electrical engineering variables.
How is the Rooftop Solar Power Plants Installed? The industry, commercial establishment, residence or institution where the rooftop solar power plant is being installed is generally not in the business of solar power generation. Hence, they will ask a vendor to install the rooftop solar power plant. The vendor will charge some money, assess the site, design the plant and install it. Simple? No. To explain, I will tell you a story, a real story.
The Rooftop Solar Consultancy Story. We, Adler Technoserve Pvt Ltd were approached by a housing complex for consultancy for installing a rooftop solar power plant in their society. Due to the extant laws in the state, the installation comprised 31 independent rooftop solar power plants aggregating to 500 KWp. We approached the client with our standard workflow proposal and price quote covering: –
- Customer need assessment.
- Site potential assessment.
- Preliminary plant design.
- Budgeting of the project.
- Feasibility Study.
- Preparation of tender document.
- Vendor assessment.
- Vendor selection.
- Vetting of design and Bill of Material.
- Monitoring of installation.
- Solar plant acceptance.
However, the client, in order to optimise cost told us to just support for the last three activities. We explained the perils of not engaging us for the complete project, but they had made up their mind. Having seen and executed several projects, a consultancy like Adler Technoserve has insight into several factors which impact a rooftop solar project. The client is usually not aware of these factors and the several hidden pitfalls which become clear only once the execution starts. Our client approached and selected the vendor for installing the rooftop solar power plant based on the parameters which they considered important. The price obviously played an extremely important role.
The agreement for the project was concluded in Feb 2017. Under normal conditions, even a complex 31 plant project aggregating to 500 KWp should be completed in six to seven months. Unfortunately, the project under discussion is still not completed after 29 months. The reasons?
Firstly, the vendor changed the size of aggregated plant and the design of individual rooftop solar power plants because the roof size did not match his assumptions. This led to a redesign of all the rooftop solar power plants and the installation sequence desired by the client.
Secondly, there is a long list of excuses provided by the vendor. But the bottom line is that the project is not completed because of lack of project management. The vendor does not use even the basic tools for project management. There is no planning and scheduling. They work as and when the material is made available and sanctions are obtained. There is no sequencing of tasks, no agreed timeline and no funds with the vendor to accelerate the pace.
How Does a Rooftop Solar Consultancy Help? Above issues could have been avoided if the client had engaged a solar consultancy for the complete project, because as solar consultants, Adler Technoserve physically measure the site during site assessment. Thereafter, Adler Technoserve fits the preliminary design to the actual site. Hence, with a solar consultant there is no question of the assessment going wrong. Secondly, while assessing the vendor, the solar consultancy assesses them on more than 10 parameters to ensure that they have the technical skills as well as financial capability to complete the rooftop solar power project in time. As solar consultant, Adler Technoserve includes various clauses and penalties in the contract to ensure that the vendor completes the rooftop solar power project in time.
For a guaranteed stress-free solar installation, please hire a solar consultancy like Adler Technoserve and watch your rooftop solar power plant come up in time and start adding to your bottom line through reduced energy tariff.