- TECSI testing finds Origami Solar steel frames superior to aluminium ones
- Test had compared Origami’s 35mm tall steel frame with a 40mm aluminum frame
- Origami frames were found to be above satisfactory in terms of rigidity and stability
Patent-pending solar panel steel frame developer, Origami Solar, has published independent testing results by TECSI Solar. TECSI had conducted a test comparing Origami’s 35mm tall steel frame with a 40 mm aluminum frame under same conditions, using the same PV laminates.
According to the report, the Origami steel frame design was definitely superior in performance, while compared to normal aluminium frame.
The steel frames were tested for compression strength to support top calm loads, and Origami frames were found to be above satisfactory in terms of rigidity and stability. The steel frames also stood out in terms of frame wall rigidity, structural stability, and total deflection. When it came to installation compatibility, the steel frames proved quite compatible with the existing rack systems.
Founder and Principal Engineer at TECSI Solar Samuel Truthseeker said, “Our office has concluded that the Origami steel frame is a suitable candidate for consideration to replace extruded aluminum PV module frames and can provide significantly better performance if properly designed.”
Origami Solar says that switching to steel frames would greatly benefit the solar industry. As long and expensive supply chains that are burdened with increased demand lead to rise in solar panel costs, a shift to steel frames would greatly reduce supply chain concentration risks and help stabilize prices. To add to this, the steel frames also stand to benefit from solar power system tax incentives, which is a prominent part of pending federal legislation. Moreover, as per Boundless Research report, steel reduces production-related GHG emissions by 87%, hence will be good for the environment.
Today, light aluminum is the key material for panel frames that everyone is using. However, recently Chinese module maker Risen presented at a TaiyangNews conference its new HJT high efficiency products using steel frames (see Strengthening High Efficiency HJT Modules with Robust Frame Design).
The executive summary of the TECSI report can be found here.