Tracker Sway Accident at a Large Project in the Northwest of China

In June of 2020, a video was spread on internet showing the PV tracking arrays of a power plant swaying violently up and down in the strong wind. A worker tried to get close to the tracking row but failed eventually. The scene looked terrifying, and only the howling of wind could be heard.

On June 26, the insider revealed that the PV power plant is a super large project located in the northwest of China. The plant was installed with tracking system from a foreign supplier. On the day of the accident, some tracking rows at exterior section were out of control due to the strong wind.
According to the insider’s information, the true causes of the accident were: a) bracket design was changed from H type to C type steel by tracker supplier. H type has stronger strength and certainly higher cost. b) And another main cause was that there were no dampers in the configuration.
Above two causes might be out of lowered configuration from tracker supplier so as to cut down cost. From this accident we should take a lesson that it is unwise to pursue merely low cost and sacrifice security of the whole investment.

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