Unirac and NRG Energy join forces on solar powered shelter for Haiti children

Modules on the Zanmi Beni Home for Children, Haiti.
Modules on the Zanmi Beni Home for Children, Haiti. Image: Unirac.

Solar mounting company Unirac has formed a partnership with developer NRG Energy to supply equipment for a 52kW solar facility in Haiti.

The Zanmi Beni Home for Children has been equipped with Unirac’s SolarMount (E)volution mounting system.

The solar array went online at the second quarter of 2012. 

The Zanmi Beni Home installation is designed to withstand the fierce winds that frequently plague Haiti during strong seasonal hurricanes.

The home acts as a shelter with access to a stable energy supply providing thus a safe and healthy environment for 64 children.

The majority of these children have displaced after the devastating earthquake in Leogane, 25 km west of Port-au-Prince, the Haiti’s capital in 2010.

Peter Lorenz, Unirac’s CEO said: "We are proud to have been a part of this important humanitarian effort to provide a safe haven for some of Haiti's most vulnerable citizens. Making reliable power for this home a reality was of utmost importance, and we understood that our ability to provide NRG with the highest level of customer support would, in turn, ensure a seamless installation at Zanmi Beni."

John Bates senior vice president, of NRG Solar said: "Unirac's SM(E) solution was integral to the success of our Zanmi Beni installation as it met or exceeded our wind load requirements for a hurricane prone environment."

Unirac offered installation training to NRG employee staff thought the building of a simulated roof at the company’s headquarters in Albuquerque.

Juan Suarez Unirac’s engineering director said: "SM(E)'s ICC designation reflects adherence to the latest industry standards for safety, which takes into account high winds and seismic loads."

Unirac targets to offer PV mounting products that meet or exceed the industry's highest standards. The company expects to continue working with ICC to enhabce its engineering quality and safety.

Located in North of Port-au-Prince Zanmi Beni aims to house abandoned children with physically or developmentally disadvantage.

The project represents a collective effort as it has received support by Zanmi Lasante, the sister organisation of Partners in Health and Operation Blessing International.

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