Berryville Solar Field
As with any investment in a structure, ensuring the foundations of solar
panels can withstand loads is paramount to their longevity. Helical piles
have been commonly used as an efficient alternative for ground mount solar
panels which are designed with their own support system extending to the ground.
Situation: A series of Tenk Solar Panels were to be installed in Berryville, Arkansas.
Tenk Solar Panels are rack mount, rather than ground mount, meaning a
series of foundations support a singular monorail or rack to which an
array of panels are then attached. Additionally, the foundations were
to be installed at a remote field where access with a concrete truck proved
Proposed Solution: Based on load requirements from Tenk and the soil information from the
site, an engineer developed a plan utilizing (16) 2 7/8" helical
piles that would be torqued to 6 ft. into the soil and extend up to 4
ft. out of the soil. The piles had to be installed within 1 in. of the
plan both vertically and horizontally. Once installed, they could be trimmed
to match the side grade and then have the caps installed.
Outcome: During installation several pile locations encountered a layer of rock
which had to be drilled through in order for installation to be complete.
Overcoming the unforeseen obstacle, all piles were installed within required
parameters, taking only half a day, and were ready for the solar panels
to be installed immediately.
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