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Month: August 2017

Colleges and Universities Go Solar

Colleges and universities across the country have large utility bills due to dishwashers in dining halls, campus computer labs, and dormitory mini fridges, among many other things. The SunShot Initiative is helping to make it easier for college campuses to use solar energy by helping to ease the financial aspect. Colleges who go solar can save money by reducing campus operating costs while carrying other economic and environmental benefits. Out of the universities who are solar powered, the top ones include Northwestern University and Drexel University. Northwestern started using solar power in 2011, with an installation of a 16.8-kilowatt...

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Overview of Specific Yield

Specific yield (kWh/kWp) is one of the most commonly used performance metrics for all sizes of solar systems. It’s used for many things such as comparing different locations, analyzing different designs, and assessing the health of an array. Specific yield refers to how much energy (kWh) is produced for every kWp of module capacity over the course of a year. Typical values can range from 1,000 kWh/kWp to over 2,000 kWh/kWp, but the actual value is driven by many factors, which include location, module selection, and balance of system efficiency. A project’s location determines the amount of sunlight or...

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How America’s Cloudiest Cities Are Producing A Ton of Solar Power

Solar energy and cloudiness may seem incompatible, but in reality solar panels can be really valuable even in cloudy climates. A great example of this is Germany, while getting as much sun as Alaska does every year but has become a global leader on solar. In 2015, about 1.5 million solar installations there generated about 7.5% of Germany’s net electricity consumption. A gorgeous cloudless sky that has beaming sunlight every hour of the day is a dream scenario for solar panels, but is usually unrealistic. Even with a cloudy sky, at least some usable sunlight is still getting through...

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