BIPV - Building Integrated Photovoltaic

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La Pedevilla Chalet

BIPV architectural system: 
Opaque roof
Tilted roof
Building use: 
BIPV integration year: 
Between 2013 and 2018
Eurac Research
La Pedevilla Chalet BIPV roofing system (Arch. Armin Pedevilla)
Strada Pliscia 13, Marebbe (BZ), Italy

The client, Arch. Armin Pedevilla, was personally involved in project process, being the main designer of the building. He was supported by the Bergmeister engineering firm for the structural studies. Leitner Electro Srl provided an offer for a photovoltaic plant and evaluated a first price calculation through a payback simulation and was chosen to be responsible for the PV system’s architectural and technical design as well as the installation. Aleo Solar GmbH was chosen as the module supplier. In 2013, the building construction was concluded and the PV plant was connected to the electric grid.

Aesthetic integration

The photovoltaic system is integrated into the wooden roof of a mountain chalet. It is made of black modules replacing the conventional roof boards, in a way that the plant blends in very well with the dark roof. The building is surrounded by the impressive scenery of the South Tirol dolomite mountain ridges.

Energy integration

The chalet is certified ‘CasaClima A’ and achieved the nZEB (nearly Zero-Energy Building) target, due to the exploitation of solar and geothermal energy and the employment of energy-efficient building solutions. The photovoltaic system was calculated to produce around 6,592 kWh per year. It is able to cover the building’s electric consumption for the ventilation system and the heat recovery. Around an 80% of the produced photovoltaic electricity is self-consumed. The system has access to the net metering scheme (Scambio sul Posto) (Leitner Electro Srl).

Technology integration

The 25 photovoltaic modules (Aleo Solar S_79 SOL) are mounted with special aluminium Solrif profile frames and fixed to the substructure with special mounting clamps, used to brace two modules to their frames in the overlapping area. This system ensures weather tightness thanks to the special horizontal interlock of the modules’ profile frames and the additional rubber lip placed between the overlapping module edges. The modules are naturally back ventilated, due to the distance between the modules and the roof. For safety reasons, the wiring and the connectors are placed in a grid gutter, fixed on fire-resistant plasterboard that separates the modules from the wooden parts of the roof.

Decision making

From the beginning, the client included the PV plant into the building project, driven by the purpose of creating a high-energy efficiency building, able to produce the energy required using most of the on-site available RES (renewable energy sources). Once the economic feasibility was verified through simplified calculations, he confirmed the installation of the plant. The PV panels were architecturally integrated into the roof with the main goal of reaching a high level of aesthetic quality, matching the building’s dark painted oak exterior (Leitner Electro Srl).

Lesson learnt

The construction can be considered a modern interpretation of the old ‘Paarhof’, the traditional kind of farm building typical for South Tyrol, built with a local natural material such as pine wood and white Dolomite concrete (Leitner Electro Srl). The photovoltaic technology is integrated combining contemporary with traditional design. Simple standard PV modules are placed on the roof as if they were conventional roofing components blended into the dark wood boards, making the building a great example of photovoltaic integration with high replication potential. This example shows that reaching an overall high quality of a BIPV system requires a careful design, with care for details and sensitivity to the surrounding, but it does not always require specific custom-made products. Since ‘standard’ products were used, the cost of this BIPV system (i.e. 2,603 €/kWp) is not much higher compared to ‘ground mounted’ systems.



Project type: 
New construction
Building function: 
Integration system: 
Opaque tilted roof


Module type: 
Standard modules
Solar technology: 
Monocrystalline silicon
System capacity [kWp]: 
System size [m²]: 
Module size [mm]: 
1,016 X 1,704
Tilt [°]: 


Total cost [€]: 


Aleo Solar GmbH
Marius Eriksen Strasse 1, Prenzlau, Germany


Strada Pliscia 13, Marebbe (BZ), Italy

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