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Timber Structure for Photo-voltaic Array in Southern Philippines

Photo-voltaic (PV) panels have reduced in cost in recent years, and the reduction is expected to continue. In 1976 the installed cost was about 100 USD/watt, but by 2017 had dropped to about 0.41 USD/watt.i This makes PV panels attractive as a source of electricity in third-world communities blessed with high sunshine hours but low financial ability to import fuels and rotating machinery needed to generate electricity in the traditional manner of moving wires through a magnetic field.

This paper describes a 24 X 24 metre timber structure, capable of supporting 288 PV panels that can generate 90 kilowatts of electricity. Each structure is in the form of a six-legged table with a sloping top, some thirty tables being needed for the first site. We have designed the structure to survive cyclones and earthquakes in accordance with the National Structural Code of the Philippines.ii

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