REC Solar, a solar power developer and a subsidiary of Mainstream Energy Corporation, has developed and installed 3.5MW of PV capacity for 12 public schools in Arizona, US.
The company installed PV systems at the following schools: Greenway Elementary School (117kW); Lowell Primary School (158kW); Bisbee High School (412kW); Tombstone High School (301kW); Meyer Elementary School (133kW); Copper Rim Elementary School (275kW); High Desert Middle School (350kW); Evergreen Elementary School (309kW); Mesquite Elementary School (349kW); Glassford Hills Middle School (349kW); Coyote Springs Elementary School (349kW); and Granville Elementary School (349kW).
The PV arrays are owned and operated by Arizona Public Service (APS) as part of the utility’s Solar for Schools Program. They have an operational lifetime of more than 20 years and are expected to generate enough electricity to offset the schools’ electricity bills by up to 20%.
In addition to generating power, the arrays provide the schools with on-site opportunities for students to learn about solar energy. Each of the twelve schools have educational kiosks that display data relating to the array including the amount of kilowatt hours saved and information about how much money the school is saving on its electric bill. Teachers can access the data and create lessons plans around how electricity is produced and used.
“Solar is a cost-effective upgrade for schools nationwide,” said Cary Hayes, Director of Business Development for REC Solar. “Solar electricity saves schools money on their electric bills, reduces budget pressures, and allows funds to be invested where schools need it most — classrooms and kids. We look forward to utilising our industry expertise to bring solar to more educational facilities, from elementary schools to universities, in Arizona and beyond.”
Educational facilities are a rapidly growing market for REC Solar. These PV systems follow successful projects at a number of other schools including a 450kW system at Cromer Elementary School in Flagstaff, Arizona, which was also installed by REC Solar.