Testing and Evaluation of the Solar Panel Sign Support SystemAuthor/Presenter: Bullard, D. Lance, Jr.; Bligh, Roger P.; Menges, Wanda L.; Schoeneman, Sandra K.
The purpose of this series of tests is to verify the performance of the pedestal base sign installation when attached to the ground with a helical type screw-in foundation anchor assembly and equipped with the solar power (photovoltaic) hardware necessary to operate flashing signal beacons. Additionally, wind load analysis was also performed to determine the strength of the installation under extreme wind conditions. A pedestal base sign installation equipped with photovoltaic equipment and attached to the ground with a helical type screw-in foundation anchor assembly successfully met the evaluation criteria set forth in National Cooperative Highway Research Program (NCHRP) Report 350. The installation was fabricated using a Pelco (model SP 1014 TX) square cast aluminum traffic signal base with a 114 mm (4.5 in) outside diameter x 3.96 m (13 ft) long spun aluminum pole. Attached to the pole was a 16 mm x 1.2 m x 1.2 m (0.625 in x 48 in x 48 in) plywood warning sign with the bottom of the sign height 2.1 m (7.0 ft). In addition, a 305 mm (12.0 in), LED lamp, flashing yellow signal beacon was mounted directly above the sign panel. A 1429 mm x 654 mm x 89 mm (56.3 in x 25.7 in x 3.5 in) solar panel weighing 235.8 N (53 lb) was attached atop the support. The battery cabinet for the panel was mounted behind the sign panel and weighed 520.4 N (117 lb). The helical type screw-in foundation anchored the assembly (model no. PB 5306) in NCHRP Report 350 standard soil. Under this project, the safety performance of selected work zone traffic control devices was evaluated through full-scale crash testing in accordance with NCHRP Report 350 guidelines. The pedestal base sign support installation with solar voltaic equipment and a flashing beacon installed atop a screw-in helical type ground anchor was found to be in compliance with NCHRP Report 350 guidelines and is considered suitable for implementation. Details of the pedestal base sign installation with solar voltaic equipment and a flashing beacon, as tested, are presented in this report. Installations that deviate in construction significantly from the details presented hereafter may require additional engineering evaluation and /or testing.
Publication Date: January 2001
Topics: Crash Tests; Sign Supports; Traffic Control Devices