Education Solar Panel
Check out our Education Solar Panel!
In December of 2015, the Minnesota Discovery Center (MDC) was awarded one of 39 innovative renewable energy and energy efficiency projects by the state’s Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs). MDC partnered with MN Power, Zenergy, Silicon Energy, and AbateTek to install a solar electric system here on MDC’s grounds.
MDC is interested in renewable energy for two main reasons. The first is to provide an educational resource for visitors that will help connect the past to the present. Click here to see how we are reducing our carbon footprint! The second reason is to provide an important first step towards buy-in for future larger solar installations, which would help address rising variable operating costs by offsetting the our overall energy consumption.
MDC’s solar panel installation was complete in the summer 2016. The solar array is installed on the south side of the Research Building on the grass area. It is 2.2 kilowatt (kW) ground mounted array. The solar electric system is 10 feet in depth by 14 feet in width.
With the proposed system, the estimated first year value of energy offset by the system will be $245.00. MDC’s carbon footprint will be reduced. Over the life of the system, 56 tons of carbon dioxide (CO2) will be eliminated from our footprint. That is equivalent to planting 1,305 trees or recycling 177 tons of waste instead of sending it to the landfill.