A Comparative Technical Analysis of PV Tracker Architectures and Associated Lifetime Costs

Photovoltaic power plant equipment is typically selected almost exclusively on upfront cost, as capital expenditure, or CapEX. But a more valuable analysis for PV plant design, build, and lifetime management would be to add accurate operational expense, or OpEx, to the initial financial decision-making process and project component selection. 

This analysis proves that centralized single-axis trackers offer benefits over decentralized trackers: 

  • An Increased Net Present Value (NPV) by over $1.3 million dollars
  • Lowered LCOE over your project’s lifetime using a centralized tracker architecture 
  • reduced total lifetime OPEX by 42% by using a centralized tracker vs. a decentralized tracker
  • Increased plant energy output versus distributed tracker architecture, and
  • Decreased project lifetime trackers costs of 7% 

This research provides solar developers as well as asset owners and plant operators with real-world financial data to make more thoughtful project component selection and gain  insight into how these initial choices surprisingly affect the total lifetime cost of ownership of a PV power plant.


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Lowest OpEx and O&M

Which single-axis tracker architecture can drastically lower O&M costs over the project lifecycle.


Best Tracker Design

Which design is most profitable:  centralized tracker design or distributed architecture design.


Lifetime Project Costs

Data-driven research helps Developers, lenders, owners, and EPCs choose the appropriate tracker.