Aeroelastic stability of solar trackers – Effect of dampers and other shock absorbers

It is a well-known fact that structures of solar trackers are liable to experience severe damage because of wind action. This trouble arises as a result of their lightness and flexibility. The risk depends on several variables of the tracker, being the main ones: stow position, chord length, torsional stiffness and available amount of damping.

There are available tracker designs on the market that cancel out the adverse effect of some of these variables by boosting the favourable effect of other ones. It is the case of damping, a mechanical property that can be boosted by adding external elements. These elements have low cost, and they are easily installed. Therefore they offer an economically competitive solution in contrast to the alternatives of increasing the stiffness or the steel strength.

For a particular tracker structure working under specific operation conditions, which additional damping provided by external elements is needed in order to guarantee the safe response of the structure over the design life of the plant? This question is interesting from the point of view of the design, operation and modernization of plants. To answer it with guarantee and strictness, a great technical effort is required.

MC2 Estudio de Ingeniería developments in the research of this field have allowed us to develop a methodology of numerical simulation characterized by its reliable technical basis, verified accuracy and absolute independence of involved parties.

MC2 Estudio de Ingeniería continues to review numerous models of solar trackers. Reviewed projects add up more than 2600 MW.



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