Greenbuddies Tips – December 2021

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Greenbuddies Charging – Our focus isn’t only on construction projects…

Despite the height of the season, the approaching end of the year brings an opportunity to pause for a moment and briefly recap the past almost twelve months. For the younger “charging” sister company of our solar business, the year that’s about to end has been very successful, and one could even say a turning point, in the true sense of the word.

The business focus of Greenbuddies Charging is building charging infrastructure to meet the needs of Europe’s rapidly growing electric mobility. This no longer means just building and connecting new infrastructure or repairing existing charging stations for electric vehicles. Our customers’ needs very often include the intent for building carports for their clients’ electric or hybrid cars, connecting a photovoltaic plant as a local source of green energy, installing and configurating battery storage, designing and laying all the cabling, etc., simply delivering a complete solution from A to Z.

Newly finished carport project in Lutzmannsburg

We at Greenbuddies Charging see the promise to provide a complete service for our customers not just as an empty marketing phrase, but as a real commitment for each and every one of us. Increasingly, we are being approached by clients asking us to help them assess the economic and technical feasibility of their investment project based on our experience and best practices. Such requests come from a variety of industries, be it transport engineering, logistics or the waste management segment. I will be honest when I say that this confidence in us is very pleasing to hear. It is proof that our company’s competencies, are no longer limited only to the quality and reliable execution of design, construction, and electrical installation work, as well as they are positively received by the business community. Our “soft” skills are starting to play a bigger part on a larger scale. Helping our clients with consultations in obtaining subsidies, preparing economic return studies, comparative analyses of technical implementation options, as well as quite practical services, such as changes in the land development plan, etc.

In 2021, we have successfully offered our services to clients who are among leaders in their fields on the Czech, European and even the global market. We have completed three successful projects and we have other opportunities to develop in the next few years. In our efforts to expand into this segment, we can rely not only on our own skills and expertise, but also on the extensive experience of our sister entities within the group, Greenbuddies Consulting and Greenbuddies Development. We can also rely on the extensive knowledge of our selected external partners, who are undoubtedly among the best in their field, often in a European context.

Our cooperation with Tritium and Ionity

Thanks to the trust of one of our valued clients, we also had the opportunity to prepare a technical-financial comparison study for a project submitted by a prominent player in the field of renewable energy. Our team recommended a number of technical improvements to the original technical parameters or optimizing the overall cost. To our great pleasure, some of the recommendations were accepted and although Greenbuddies Charging were not the original designer, have left a mark on the way the technical implementation of the said investment will take place in the future.

Finally, on behalf of Greenbuddies Charging and the entire Group, let me wish all our customers, partners and suppliers a successful conclusion to 2021, a peaceful Christmas and New Year’s holiday season if possible, and I look forward to further cooperation.

Ales Damm

Cable Lug Pressing

The topic of pressing cable lugs is an issue that does not seem to require much attention. But reality shows that it is not advisable to underestimate this topic. Using the wrong cable lug can cause a short circuit at the connection point, which will result in the loss of equipment and a power failure of an entire part of the PV plant that the cable transmits.

When cutting off a badly pressed eye, the AC cable will be shortened. This creates a complication when there are already tens of meters of cables in the ground, weighing hundreds of kilograms, that cannot be moved by one, let alone ten centimeters, which would be missing.

Details of correctly pressed cable lugs

For economic reasons, AC power cables are usually made of aluminum, but all the combiner boxes, invertors, transformer stations are equipped with a copper busbars The direct combination of these two materials leads in time to their reaction and disruption of this connection. In worst case, this causes sparking in the joint and short-circuiting. Instead of using cheap aluminum lugs, it is necessary to use a bimetallic mesh, or at least an aluminum bimetal (bathing) pad for the aluminum mesh.

When choosing cable lugs, it is always crucial to read the datasheets carefully and know exactly which cable will be delivered to the construction site. It is not enough to have information only about the cross-section but also about its type, ie whether the cable is “SE”, “SM”, “RM” or “RE”. A different lug size is required for the 240 SE cable than for the 240 SM cable. Unfortunately, it is common practice that seemingly the right siye of lugs arrive at the construction site for a 240mm2 cable, but then they do not fit the 240mm2 cable during the installation.

There is a large number of cable lug manufacturers, such as GPH or Wiekowitz, but by far the most widespread supplier is Klauke. It is necessary to pay attention to the supplier of the lugs, as not every manufacturer has compatible pressing/crimping pliers with the lugs from other manufacturers. However, most products are compatible with Klauke tools, whose pliers leave a stamped mark when pressed to verify that the lugs have been pressed with a correctly adjusted tool. This is not a normative obligation, but a quick visual check of the correctness of the pressing. Such professional tools cost thousands of euros.

At Greenbuddies, we are committed to delivering quality and professional work, which is why we also have professional tools at our disposal, in this case Klauke hydraulic pliers.

Q&A Session with our Site managers

Greenbuddies pay a lot of attention to quality. One of the most important aspects is to achieve consistent management on site on a day-to-day basis. Therefore, throughout this year we have built a team of our own site managers who supervise every site of high complexity (scope, size, technology … etc.). Currently, the team consists of 5 site managers. Please read what Vít, Jakub and Miro, 3 of these playful people, answered in our short Q&A session:

Jakub Vrtiška

• What has surprised you most about working with Greenbuddies?
The most surprising thing for me was that everybody working at Greenbuddies is a great bunch of people and great cooks.

• What do you find most challenging about your job?
The most challenging thing for me is to be away from home while working on projects and finding my way back.

• Tell me about someone who has influenced your decision to work with Greenbuddies?
I was always fascinated with renewable energy and solar energy in particular.

Vítek Kubín

• If you could change one thing about the Solar Industry, what would it be?
I would like to see an improvement in the effectivity of solar panels.

• What’s your personal philosophy on what should be done about Renewables/Solar industry?
In general I think that we should focus on roof installations and their improvement. Because everything that has a roof usually needs electricity as well and we can provide clean energy exactly where it is needed and on an otherwise unused space.

• What might (someone) be surprised to know about you?
When I was 4 years old, I was held in the arms of Michael Jackson while he finished his concert in Prague in 1996 and together we said good-bye to the crowd at the end.

Miroslav Horňák

• What might (someone) be surprised to know about you?
Before working at Greenbuddies, I have worked in the nuclear energy industry.

• What would you tell someone who is thinking about building a PV plant?
I would suggest building it quickly before the sun disappears.

• What do you think will change about the PV world over the next five years?
I hope that all mall parking lots will be covered by PV canopies producing solar energy, that will be stored in batteries.

• How would (someone) describe you?
As a Bear from the Slovakian Tatra Mountains.

Greenbuddies Christmas greeting card