This April 2010, the first run of S-5! photovoltaic attachment clamps made in Canada will roll off the assembly line in Toronto, Ontario and be immediately available for sales and installation. This is good news for companies looking to participate as solar power providers in the Ontario Power Authority’s feed-in tariff (FIT) program. The FIT program offers guaranteed payment per kilowatt of power deliver into the grid, but requires participating providers to utilise a minimum of 50% domestic content.

Being the first solar mounting solution for standing seam metal roofs manufactured in Ontario will have an immediate impact on companies ready to do installations.

The program is set up as a win-win, encouraging energy independence through renewable sources at the policy level, while offering incentives for the kind of innovation and cost-containment that only the free market can provide. “There are a lot of potential solar power producers standing by, hoping to jump in,” says Keith Lipps, VP of marketing and ales for S-5! “We began manufacturing in Toronto specifically to help them out and be a part of this great effort.”

US-based S-5! has long been the leader in attachment solutions for metal roof top installation. Their patented attachment technology allows virtually anything to be securely attached to a standing seam metal roof without piercing the panelling. The S-5-PV kit is the easiest, most cost-effective way to install solar panels on rails or directly to standing seam metal roofs, and is by far the most popular choice for solar panel installation worldwide. Ontario distributors, such as Pro-Bel Group based in Ajax, are lining up to begin carrying the S-5-PV kit on 2 April 2010. FIT participants holding solar power contracts can now meet their 50% domestic content requirement simply by switching from the US-made S-5-PV kits to the S-5-PV kits and mounting clamps now made in Ontario.

Steve Ray, Business Development Manager of Essex Energy in Windsor Ontario couldn’t be more pleased with S-5!’s decision to produce locally. “We’ve done extensive engineering tests on the S-5 PV clamps and found they hold up remarkably well in both rail-mount and direct-mount installations,” says Ray. “We plan to use them on our first three major FIT projects scheduled to begin this spring.”

The window to make a move is small and closing fast. In 2011 the domestic content requirement for new FIT contractors will be 60%. “After January, solar providers will need to buy locally-produced PV panels in order to qualify for a contract,” says Keith Lipps. “Hopefully the solar panel manufacturers will be joining us here in Ontario soon.”

For more information please visit the S-5! website.