Solar Energy Solutions

Richardsville Elementary

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Project at a Glance

  • Type of installation: Ballasted roof mount
  • Environmental benefits over 25 years:
    • CO2 savings: 15,783,267 lbs
    • Equivalent CO2 in miles driven: 12,502,534
    • CO2 emissions from 5,551,759 lbs of coal

The Project

The nations first net zero elementary school. Quite a claim to fame. The school took this title in 2012 but SES was called in in 2020 to upgrade the historic thin film panel based system damaged in extreme weather conditions. Using more contemporary modules and modular string inverters, rather than a large central inverter, SES completely stripped off the old system and built from scratch again. Inverter systems were also upgraded on the adjoining solar parking canopy structure. The Richardsville Elementary solar system is made up of an impressive 654 Trina Solar 380 watt panels for a solar array totaling just under 249 kW.  The array is ballast mounted on the flat roof of the school building.  The system will put out approximately 308,815 kWh of energy in its first year and will produce approximately 7,126,218 kWh over the 25 year guaranteed life of the system.  Solar panels can put out power for 40 years or more, which means a lot of affordable power for this school for a long time allowing the school to dedicate more of their resources to educating their students.

Full details of the many projects this school took on to drive down energy usage and to act as a benchmark for those schools that would follow their example: Nations First Net Zero Energy School