Austrian company Aerocompact to make solar racking in India

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Racking solutions maker Aerocompact—an Austrian company with presence across 14 locations worldwide—has launched its India operations. Operating out of Noida office with Mandar Mainde as Country Manager, Aerocompact India will manufacture solar racking solutions in Bengaluru to cater to the Indian as well as ASEAN markets.

To manufacture the racking products, the company has partnered with Norwegian aluminium producer Hydro’s India arm in Bengaluru on supply of raw material, i.e., aluminium.

Speaking to pv magazine about their entry into the Indian market, Aerocompact India partner Stefan Schäfer said: “We decided to manufacture in India as for the last few years we have been receiving many enquiries from the Indian market. A study of the PV quality in Indian projects further helped us realise that we can make a difference here through our solar racking solutions that are smartly engineered to overcome the challenges of installing PV modules on different types of surfaces and structures.

“Our focus will be on products for solar rooftops, which we see as a huge market in India with the government support through subsidies, etc,” he added.

Schäfer sees early and significant growth of the company in India, driven by the quality of their racking solutions coupled with reasonable pricing achieved through local manufacturing.

Aerocompact, which has supplied racking systems for over 1 GW of solar installation worldwide since its inception in 2012, is aiming to supply for at least 20 MW of rooftop solar in the next six months in India.

“India is one of the most promising markets for us. Our goal is to bring in at least 20 MW of business from rooftop solar in the next six months in India,” Aerocompact GmbH CEO Mathias Muther told pv magazine.

“Our system will be reasonably priced—as these will be locally manufactured—while offering the benefit of all the knowledge and experience from other markets imbibed in the design using an advanced engineering software Aerotool,” he added.

Aerotool, a design and simulation software, enables quotations and system designs to be created without the need for on-site visits.

Highlighting the key role of racking in solar installations, Muther said:  “Racking is the most important part of the overall solar project installation. It saves your roof and your installation while costing just about 5% of the overall installation cost. If you buy for half a percentage more on racking which is tested, it will ensure your investments into installations are safe. Unlike imports, our systems will be produced from start to finish in India keeping in mind the Indian project requirements, climatic conditions, etc and thus safeguard project installers’ huge investments in modules.”

In India, Aerocompact will start with manufacturing of one product line for metal roofs. Beginning next year, it plans to expand manufacturing to its other flagship product lines.

Welcoming Aerocompact’s move to Make in India, National Solar Energy Federation of India (NSEFI) Subrahmanyam Pulipaka said:“Two core issues affecting the Indian market are lack of Indigenization (or Indianization) and digitalization. Given that India has different roof patterns and different climatic conditions across states which PV rooftops are subjected to, we need indigenized technology that can help Indians to be part of it and also for qualitative proliferation of rooftop solar. Aerocompact with its move to Make in India addresses these issues.”

NSEFI is working with European counterparts on best practices guideline for rooftop installations.