A racking system for solar installations on ballasted membrane roofs has been developed by Ohio-based Roll-A-Rack. The rack is designed not to compromise the structural integrity of a roof, which relies on ballasts for stability.

The added weight of solar energy can often exceed the physical limit of a membrane roof, Roll-A-Rack said. To address this, the company developed a 12-inch metal channel rack that is distributed over the existing roof ballast while securing the solar panels.

The rack can be as thin as 22 gauge and roll formed. Roll-A-Rack said it supports 50 psf snow load and 37.5 psf upwind. The company said automated installation is feasible for its product.

Roll-A-Rack said it’s busy queuing developers or installers to test the product. The first 100 kW of scaffolding would be provided free of charge. The company also said it would conduct upwind analysis to determine ballast requirements.

The product development was funded in part by a grant from the US Department of Energy Solar Technologies Office.

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