Advanced mounting solutions for British and Irish roofs

6/19/17, 2:00 PM -

Swiss based Ernst Schweizer AG is expanding into the UK and Irish solar market with its advanced mounting systems for a broad range of different rooftops. Market driver is the growing interest for solar self-consumption,. Current pound/euro exchange rates pose a challenge for pricing though.

Ernst Schweizer AG offers a broad variety of rooftop mounting system solutions for solar modules for UK and Ireland.
There are a broad variety of residential rooftops in UK and Ireland that require advanced mounting solutions for solar panels.

 “The UK’s domestic solar market already builds more and more on the value of self-consumption as the feed-in tariff drops and becomes less meaningful”, Sales Manager Martyn Johnson told pv Europe. “Self-consumption in the commercial market is one of the biggest drivers in countries like Germany, Italy and other markets. We are convinced the UK will be no different, though obstacles need to be overcome”, he adds. “Current pound/euro exchange rates pose a challenge but we are confident our pricing will continue to be attractive”, he says.

Advanced MSP rooftop mounting systems

Schweizer consolidated its position in the solar market with the 2014 acquisition of Hilti Corporation’s PV mounting systems, comprising the MSP-FR-EW flat-roof system, the MSP-TT mounting system for metal roofs and the MSP-PR pitched-roof system. The technology, designed to address the fine tolerances and exacting standards of latest-generation construction methods, has been further developed, and its range expanded, by Schweizer. “This also makes MSP ideal for retrofitting the vast stock of existing buildings”, Johnson says.

Broad variety of roofs in UK

“Most residential roofs in UK are are pitched roofs and roughly half of them are covered by some type of slate, especially natural stone slate and products made of concrete other materials that mimic the look of slate.  The other half are for various types of tiles, including plain tiles, pan tiles and Roman tiles”, Johnson, told pv Europe. The most common type of commercial roof is a flat roof with bituminous (mostly smaller roofs up to 10,000 sq ft) or plastic membranes (mostly larger roofs above 10,000 sq ft). Another common type of commercial roof has a minimum slope covered by trapezoidal metal sheeting, he adds.

Be aware of MCS standards

Johnson also draws attention to special certifications for rooftop-mount systems needed in UK. If claiming for a feed-in tariff. the installer and all components must comply with the MCS (Microgeneration Certification Scheme) standards. Mounting systems for pitched roofs must comply with MCS 012. MSP-PR is certified to MCS 012. “Solar is growing strongly everywhere and it’s important that UK suppliers know about the quality and cost benefits of our market-leading MSP range. We would like to hear from electrical wholesalers, installers, distributors and others who may be interested as we’re confident that for many, we can help drive their businesses forward”, Johnson says.

Wide range of trainings for installers

He believes that especially on back-up and support issues, installers, builders and contractors will want to deal with local distributors and electrical wholesalers due to their local knowledge and networks. Technical training is available as a mix of classroom training and hands-on product training, Johnson says. Additionally, a wide range of marketing collateral, sales coaching is offered. Technical support options include performing or verifying solar system designs.  Currently the company cooperates with around 15 installer customers and one distributor in Northern Ireland.

Active in Ireland since 2014

The company has an office in Reigate, Surrey, from where it supports UK customers on both new-build and refurbishment projects. The Republic of Ireland as well is an important market, Johnson underlines. Schweizer has been serving customers in Ireland selling mainly MSP mounting systems since 2014.

Besides the MSP mounting systems Schweizer supplies its in-roof frame and mounting system Solrif through leading brands such as Romag in the UK. About 3 million Solrif framed PV panels have been already installed across Europe.

Schweizer also took part in the pv Guided Tours at Intersolar Europe in Munich. (HCN)

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