Structural Steel in Renewable Energy
The renewable energy sector depends on structural steel for its strength and versatility. Steel is used in many renewable energy applications from solar panels to wind turbines and more.

Infra-Metals Co. provides products and services for the renewable energy industry and its infrastructure. We offer a variety of carbon structural steel products including structural beams and tubing, angles, channel, and sheet products. Our capabilities include drilling, saw cutting, and metal forming for standard and custom components.

Learn more about the benefits of using structural steel for renewable energy construction, examples of steel applications, and why steel is a sustainable choice.

Benefits of Structural Steel for Renewable Energy

There are many benefits of working with structural steel instead of or in conjunction with materials like aluminum, wood, concrete, or composites. These include:

  • Strength and durability: Structural steel is made from iron and carbon and has a high strength-to-weight ratio. Higher carbon content by weight adds strength and ductility. This allows steel to withstand high winds, extreme weather, and heavy loads without excessive weight. It is also corrosion and fire-resistant.
  • Versatility: Structural steel is often produced into different shapes like beams, tubes, or channels, which can be used to make a range of shapes and fixtures such as solar panel frames. It is also lightweight and easy to form, so it can be used in applications with complex designs or for components that are suspended above ground.
  • Sustainability: Steel can be recycled again and again without losing strength, which limits waste and the need for new steel production.
  • Cost-effective: Structural steel requires little maintenance, and its natural durability gives structures made from it long useful lives. This reduces costs for repair or replacement. Prefabricated or pre-assembled components can be delivered ready-to-install for faster turnaround and lower construction costs.
  • Speed of construction: Structural steel components are often prefabricated, significantly reducing construction times. This is particularly advantageous for large-scale renewable energy projects.
  • Innovation: Structural steel has a high degree of design versatility, light weight, and high strength. These characteristics make it an excellent material for developing and refining new renewable energy technologies.

Renewable Energy Applications for Structural Steel

Structural steel is the material of choice for many types of renewable energy systems including:

  • Wind turbines: Structural steel is used to construct housings and towers for both offshore wind turbines and wind farms.
  • Solar power plants, arrays, and canopies: Using steel for solar panel frames helps make them resistant to weathering on solar farms and in urban developments.
  • Hydroelectric power: Many hydroelectric power components use structural steel, such as turbines and pipes (i.e., penstocks) that supply turbines with water.
  • Geothermal plants: Steel pipes are used to carry liquid in geothermal systems. Structural steel can also be used in constructing the plant itself.
  • Bioenergy and waste-to-energy plants: Bioenergy plants use structural steel for storage tanks and plant facilities.
  • Tidal and wave energy: Structural steel’s durability and corrosion resistance are ideal for underwater structures that harness waves and tidal forces.

Sustainability of Structural Steel

Steel is the world’s most recycled material, with a recycling rate of over 93%. Structural steel products can be made from recycled steel with no changes to its strength or durability. It can also be recycled for future use once a project or facility’s life cycle is complete. This means less iron mining and steel production are needed over time.

Solar Panel Mounts

Using a steel structure for solar panels ensures secure positioning and a long-lasting foundation. Infra-Metals specializes in steel components for solar panel frames and canopies. We provide pipes, wide-flange beams, round and square tubes, and other pieces for securing panels to ensure optimal collection of solar energy.

Frames can be customized for a range of panel systems used in commercial and industrial solar energy projects. Learn more here.

Structural Steel from Infra-Metals

Infra-Metals is one of the largest structural steel service providers in the US. We fabricate and supply high-quality steel components in many standard shapes and sizes, as well as custom components fabricated to your specifications. Our extensive distribution network means timely and reliable delivery to all the regions we serve.

To learn more about our commitment to sustainable energy and discuss your next project, contact us or request a quote today.