North Shore Community College is using solar cells mounted on the new Health Professions and Student Services Building to offset energy consumption.
The Health Professions & Student Services Building was designed to incorporate the 1088 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels on the main roof of the building and on walkway canopies in the parking lot to capture sunlight and turn it into energy. The 342 kW system was designed to match and offset energy consumed in the building with solar energy produced over the course of a year.
Solar PV cells convert sunlight directly into DC power which is then converted to AC. The PV arrays, mounted on steel trusses above the building, are estimated to produce 375,000 kWh/year on average. The walkways also have solar panels mounted on three canopies tilted 15 degrees due south, which should produce 35,000 kWh/yr on average. The total electrical production is estimated at 410,000 kWH annually; and preventing approximately 284 metric tons of carbon emissions annually.
The performance of the solar panels are monitored locally and via the web. This information can be accessed anytime, anywhere, by anyone with an interest.