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OnSun Integrated Drive and Control System

OnSun is a high performance drive system with integrated tracking and control that accurately positions a parabolic trough concentrator to focus solar radiation onto a thermal receiver.

OnSun consists of the SkyTrakker control system, manufactured by SkyFuel, and a customized L30 helical, hydraulic rotary actuator, manufactured by the Helac Corporation. Together, these technologies deliver superior performance and reliability, reduce operating cost, and simplify the installation of parabolic trough solar fields.

OnSun offers significant advantages over other drive and control systems used for single-axis tracking:

  • By using a helical actuator with an exclusive sliding spline gear design, OnSun provides the highest possible output torque, radial, moment, and thrust load capacities needed for today's large aperture collectors
  • All external loads are supported by the actuator, eliminating the need for extra mechanical locking devices found in industry alternatives
  • The actuator is matched with the SkyTrakker controller. Together they reduce parasitic electrical losses from tracking by 50 percent, thereby resulting in lower operating cost
  • The integrated OnSun tracking system is delivered as a compact, pre-fabricated package that allows for rapid field deployment and requires the installation of only two major components
  • Precise Control– accurate to within 0.06° with virtually no backlash
  • Simpler Design – No secondary locking device; helical actuators are hydraulically self-locking
  • Reliable, Strong and Robust – Driving torque rated at 380,000 in-lbs and holding torque tested to nearly 2 million in-lbs
  • Easy Installation – The entire system consists of only two major elements for quick mounting and connection