The Porterville Photovoltaic Array produces 6 megawatts of power. Located near the Porterville Airport in California, the utility-owned installation features a stationary racking system whose vertical supports are driven directly into the soil. This method of supporting the panels saved the client money and time by avoiding the cost of pouring footings. The racking system also features UL approved panel mounting clips that, when torqued down, bite into the panel frame to provide a ground path while simultaneously providing a means of attachment. This allowed the installers to save the cost associated with a grounding pigtail at each panel.
The above ground cabling for the array is routed in open air, rated for exposure to the elements, while the underground cabling is direct-burial; all of which saved on costs associated with conduit.
These value-engineering methods formed the standard for larger arrays across the state.
Photo credit: Cupertino Electric