The Richmond Register

Local News

June 27, 2013

EKU unveils solar panels for energy researchers

RICHMOND — Eastern Kentucky University unveiled a new solar panel system Thursday that will help power the New Science Building and allow students to study the alternative power source.

The system, located on the building’s roof, has seven panels active now, but up to 10 more can be added, said Alice Jones, director of the EKU’s Office of Sustainability.

“This gives us the beginnings of experience gathering real-time data and having students compare the power outputs,” Jones said.

The 1.6 kWh (kilowatt per hour) system cost $10,000.

The system is calculated to save EKU enough money in 10 years to recoup its cost.

Funding for the project was supplied through a partnership between EKU and Bluegrass Greensource, with both parties contributing $5,000.

The installation was completed by Sunlink Solar, a Somerset-based solar-product business. Sunlink also installed real-time energy logging and display capabilities so the system’s output can be monitored by students and compared to other types of energy sources.

Jones said the panels are expected to produce 1,460 kilowatts a year. That is roughly equal to burning 161 gallons of gasoline, and it is enough energy to keep 20 light bulbs powered for a year.

She said the panels have a significant, positive impact on the environment as well. The clean energy from the panels is expected to reduce carbon emissions by 157 tons annually.

The system is not being used to power any specific part of the science building or campus. The energy gathered from the panels is being directed into the power grid instead. Jones said the power will be consumed by campus buildings as well as others in the area.

The energy logging statistics for the panels will be tracked online by emphaseenergy.com. The website will show how much energy the system is collecting, the total amount it has collected and how those numbers compare with other forms of energy. Jones said she hoped the system’s information would be available by the end of next week.

Seth Littrell can be reached at slittrell@richmondregister.com or 624-6623.

 

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 7-27 HeartChase 1.jpg A race to the finish line

    Sheltered by overcast sky and supported by a cool breeze, teams competed Saturday morning in the second annual HeartChase at Richmond Centre.

    July 26, 2014 6 Photos

  • 7-27 Hops 1.jpg Hops & Vine Festival raises money for humane society

    Downtown Richmond’s Hops and Vine Festival started more than two years ago with a question.

    July 26, 2014 3 Photos

  • Bill Clinton will stump for Grimes in eastern Kentucky

    Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes is again calling in the “Big Dog” in her quest to unseat five-term Republican U.S. Sen. Mitch McConnell.

    Former President Bill Clinton will join Grimes on Aug. 6 for a campaign rally in eastern Kentucky, according to a campaign official who would provide no further details.

    July 26, 2014

  • 7-26 Stockyards 2.jpg Cattle farmers enjoying ‛perfect storm’

    Demand is up, and cattle are selling for record prices.

    At the same time, corn prices are down and fuel prices have stabilized.

    That adds up to a “perfect storm” for Kentucky cattle farmers, said Gary Kelly of Paint Lick as he ate lunch Friday with his brother Jimmy at the restaurant across from the Blue Grass Stockyards.

    July 26, 2014 5 Photos

  • 7-26 Fire Practice Structure 1.jpg Fire training tower going up

    A new training tower for the Richmond Fire Department is rising on Four Mile Road.

    Construction began Thursday on the four-story, steel-framed structure.

    July 26, 2014 4 Photos

  • Pavement work to restrict I-75 in Rockcastle County

    Beginning Sunday until about the end of November, Interstate 75 in Rockcastle County will be reduced to one lane in each direction between mile points 58 and 66 for pavement work.

    July 26, 2014

  • Jailed woman charged with heroin trafficking

    A Richmond woman already jailed on another charge was served with a drug trafficking warrant Thursday.

    July 26, 2014

  • County’s jobless rate improves

    Madison County’s unemployment rate for June, 6.5 percent, was a full percentage point lower than a year earlier and 0.2 points lower than in May.

    July 24, 2014

  • 7-25 Camp Invention 1.jpg Young inventors turn trash to treasure

    The first day of Camp Invention began with a room full of objects ready to be recycled, Sarah Shaffer, director of the camp said Thursday.

    July 24, 2014 6 Photos

  • 7-25 William Gilbert.jpg Four arrested on meth charges at Berea motel

    Berea Police arrested four people Wednesday at the Knights Inn on Chestnut Street, including a man they said tried to conceal a meth lab on his person.

    July 24, 2014 5 Photos