Soltec, the leading Spanish company in the manufacture and supply of single-axis trackers, forecasts supplying up to 3 GW of solar trackers to utility-scale PV plants for the 2019 financial year. This figure would result in Soltec closing the year with a record of almost 8 GW and a turnover of around 300 million dollars that would double the 2018 figure. Around 1,500 employees already form part of the workforce in the different international delegations.
Since it was founded in 2004, this Spanish company has significantly increased its sales year on year to position itself as one of the companies with the largest market share in the PV sector. To date, Soltec has supplied more than 270,000 solar trackers around the world. It became part of the Financial Times FT 1000 listed companies in 2017, as the top-ranked solar power company and fourth placed out of the 31 utilities that are included in this list. In 2018, Soltec invoiced almost 200 million dollars, an amount that it expects to double in 2019. This increase would represent a growth for the company of 100%.
“This year to date, the trend in bifacial technology is becoming key to utility-scale PV projects. Eight out of every ten quote requests are for bifacial, which confirms the commitment of Soltec when the time comes to support innovation and research in bifacial technology”, explains Eduardo de San Nicolás, Product Manager at Soltec.
Optimising bifacial tracking
As part of its commitment and strong support for innovation and the development of proprietary technologies, in 2018 Soltec inaugurated the Bifacial Tracker Evaluation Center (BiTEC) based in Livermore (California). This centre aims to study the performance of the modules and bifacial trackers under a range of albedo conditions, as well as the height, distance between modules and module temperature. In addition, the research into all of these aspects sets out to establish the best Soltec tracker design for the deployment of bifacial modules.
According to the latest results obtained at BiTEC, the SF7 bifacial tracker from Soltec, its star product, offers a bifacial gain of 16.2% in high albedo conditions (around 58%) and 10.1% in medium albedo conditions (29%). BiTEC has also studied the bifacial gain of PV modules deployed in the two most widely-used solar tracker configurations in the market today: one-in-portrait (1P) and two-in portrait (2P). The results obtained confirm that the SF7 bifacial tracker from Soltec, in 2P configuration, achieves a bifacial gain that is 2.1% higher than trackers in 1P configuration.