Mkweni, a farm located well off the electrical grid on the remote Wild Coast region of South Africa, determined a roof-mounted solar array was the best solution for their needs.

Case Study: S-5! in Mkweni, South Africa
Case Study: S-5! in Mkweni, South Africa

Contributed by | S-5!

“We are very impressed by the product and even more so by the level of service we received. Well done—truly commendable.” -Neil Goss, Director, FreePhase

 

Middle of Nowhere

Diesel generators and batteries are high-cost energy sources. Increasingly, off-grid locations are looking to alternate energy sources such as solar energy harvesting. Mkweni, a farm located well off the electrical grid on the remote Wild Coast region of South Africa, determined a roof-mounted solar array was the best solution for their needs. While the existing Safintra Saflok 700 standing seam metal roof provided a perfect mounting platform, they wanted to avoid penetrating the roof, thereby voiding the roof manufacturer’s warranties.

Safintra worked with Mkweni to contract South African solar energy integrator, FreePhase, to commission the PV system. Director Neil Goss turned to S-5!® to provide a strong, non-penetrating solar mounting solution.

 

What Worked?

S-5!’s solar attachment technology was perfect for this project. The S-5-PV Kit is a cost-effective DirectAttached™ solar mounting solution that provides module-to-module conductivity. It saves time and money by eliminating the need for rack or rail mounting methods, and by drastically reducing the need for costly copper wire and lugs. The S-5-PV Kit utilizes the extensive line of profile-specific S-5! mini attachment clamps for maximum holding strength without damaging the roof membrane.

The S-5-K Grip Mini clamp was designed by S-5! for this particularly challenging metal roof profile. Previously, installers had to choose between poor holding strength or drilling holes into the roof. But the innovative new clamp design by S-5! utilizes a selection of clamp inserts to ensure a tight hold without drilling holes in the roof.

Partnering with Safintra, S-5! product engineer, Dustin Haddock, flew from Colorado to the Wild Coast to ensure proper installation, and pitched in to help finish the project. By the end of the day, the team had completed the array. As the sun rose the next morning, the system fired up. The 10 kWp system satisfies the entire electrical requirement of the farm.

 

Customer: FreePhase (Pty) Ltd, Durban, South Africa

Location: Mkweni, Wild Coast, South Africa

Industry: Farming

Situation: Mkweni, a farm in South Africa, located well off the electrical grid, was in need of a roof-mounted solar energy harvesting system that could withstand high wind loads. It was imperative that an attachment solution be found that would avoid piercing the roof (voiding the roof manufacturer’s warranties).

Results: FreePhase, the project developer employed to commission the PV system, turned to S-5! to provide a strong, non-penetrating mounting solution. When the unique metal roof profile posed some attachment challenges, an S-5! product designer flew from Colorado to Mkweni to assist with the project. FreePhase was elated with the exceptional customer service and product performance.

Stats:

  • 10 kWp off-grid/hybrid system
  • Safintra Saflok 700 roof panels
  • 44 x 260w Trina Honey Modules
  • 165 UL/ETL Listed S-5-PV Kits
  • 165 S-5-K Grip Mini w/ GXM 50 Inserts

 

Satisfied Customer

Goss, impressed with S-5!’s extraordinary service and the product’s performance, later wrote Haddock to thank S-5! for engineering a truly problem-solving solar mounting solution for metal roofs: “We will certainly be recommending this product to everyone and anyone, and we hope to use it on as many roof installs as we can. It’s such a win! One of the biggest concerns we hear from prospective industrial clients is that they don’t want us drilling through their roof. This finally offers us something that will protect their warranties. Well done.”

 

The content & opinions in this article are the author’s and do not necessarily represent the views of AltEnergyMag
S-5!

S-5!

For over 25 years, S-5!® has been the leading authority on metal roof attachment solutions. Through rigorous research, testing and engineering, S-5!'s unique attachment products have revolutionized the metal roofing industry. We consistently exceed customer expectations by delivering unprecedented value and innovative excellence in the metal construction marketplace.

Other Articles

S-5-PVKIT 2.0 Case Study – The Boulder JCC
The challenge was to find a cost-effective PV solution that presented an ROI, which would make the project a no-brainer from a financial standpoint.
Metal Roofing—The Perfect Platform for Solar PV
Metal roofs are known for their durability, sustainability and versatility and are increasing in popularity in the solar marketplace.
More about S-5!

Comments (0)

This post does not have any comments. Be the first to leave a comment below.


Post A Comment

You must be logged in before you can post a comment. Login now.

Featured Product

RBI Solar - Dahlia Has You Covered

RBI Solar - Dahlia Has You Covered

What if you could maximize the Ground Coverage Ratio (GCR) on your next project and not have to worry about the complicated variables that come with a tracker system? With a low tilt and clearance design, Dahlia® has the highest GCR of any fixed-tilt system in the marketplace. The system is available in three tilt options (7.5, 10 and 12.5 degrees) and designed to accommodate any sized PV module. The lightweight system is engineered with fewer components, several of which are shipped to job sites pre-assembled. This design feature reduces freight costs and rapidly trims the amount of on-site installation time required to complete construction. Maximizing PV coverage on a site can lead to an increase of production, which creates greater financial return for project owners. Over 100 MW of Dahlia® projects have been deployed across the United States, in regions of variable snow and wind loads. How much can Dahlia® cover and save you on your next project?