Mounting a PANOPTES unit on a roof

Hi, I’m a part of a new team interested in building a PANOPTES unit. We’re thinking of mounting our unit on the roof of a school building, but we’re concerned about securing it. We can’t directly bolt the unit to the roof, so we’re considering building a concrete base to mount the pier on. We’ve decided to use the pier design instead of the tripod for increased stability. Are any other teams mounting PANOPTES to a roof? Alternative idea would be appreciated, as we’re still very unsure if our idea has any merit.

Hi! You are correct that using the pier option will give more stability than the tripod. And I do believe we have at least one other team (PAN010) who plans to deploy their unit on a roof. The last I heard they also were not able to bolt directly onto the roof, so were considering a concrete pad option. We should be getting an update from them in a few days, and will try to get more details either here or in their build thread. This is the UofA build, and they will be soon deploying their unit in a hopefully permanent location.

Hi vhood. Please see the PAN012 channel. We originally mounted the PAN012 unit on the rooftop of the Cahill building. I used the tripod which comes with the mount and weighed it down with gym weights. I used 75 lbs, but you can add as much as you like. The nice thing about this is the tripod allows you to easily level out the top of the mount because it has three adjustable legs. Attaching heavy gym weights on the tripod is easy as well and if heavy enough will prevent the mount moving due to bumping for example, once its properly aligned. We used this approach for several weeks at a time and the alignment remained very stable. But Im sure this could work for longer periods.

Alternatively you can try the concrete slab. As Kathy mentioned we are suggesting that for the UofA team. In this case Id recommend getting a concrete pad (about 2"x2") from Home Depot of similar and bolting the pier to that. So hopefully the UofA team will have images showing this approach implemented soon.

Hope that addresses your question

Hello, I’m a member of the PAN017 unit Building team of the ITT “S.Fedi-E.Fermi” institute of Pistoia. We’ve mounted our unit on the roof of the school without nailing it directly. We’ve spread the tar paper in order to build a base of concrete on it with a steel grid inside.
Currently the PAN017 unit is mounted on the tripod which looks steady enough. To protect the unit from the bad climatic conditions, we decided to put it inside a box made up of a metal skeleton and insulated panels. The box is equipped with a sliding door. In the attachments you can clearly understand what you’ve just read. I hope you will find this helpful.
Greetings from Pistoia

Thanks for the description but no images attached

Sorry for the inconvenience, and thanks for letting me know. I don’t know why but the photos were not uploaded.
Remedy immediately.


@Mr.Wolf that is one awesome looking enclosure.

Our current plan for PAN010 is quite similar to your own @vhood. The site on the rooftop is chosen such that the unit will sit directly above structural supports in the building. We expect to set or pour a ~2 ft. diameter concrete slab weighing somewhere around 60-100 lbs. onto a large piece of plywood to more evenly distribute the weight over the rooftop. We will fix the pier mount base plate onto the concrete slab by drilling holes and placing grommets with threaded bolts (or something of the sort) into the concrete. This enables us to level the base plate while still being secured to the concrete. More details will follow in our build thread once we’ve finalized the plan and started to install our unit.