Solar Array on Campus Serves Students and Saves Money
Posted Jun 01 2012
A 200-kilowatt solar power array installed on Baylor's campus began generating power in April, providing a savings in energy costs while giving students a “real life” laboratory in which to study sustainable energy.
Located on the former WDOD property behind Heywood Stadium, the 858-module array sits on a four-acre plot and connects directly into the Electric Power Board grid, providing power for a portion of the core campus buildings and reducing the school's CO2 emissions.
The Tennessee Valley Authority and EPB have installed a special meter that will calculate all of the kilowatt hours produced by the system, and then credit the monthly utility bill for the clean energy production.
According to retired science instructor Larry Roberts ’65, who helped lead the project in his role as Baylor’s sustainability coordinator, the panels are expected to last at least 25 years and will pay for themselves through energy savings within 10 years.
The system was installed, and is owned and operated by Lawson Electric Company. Ryan Crimmins ’78, Lawson’s CEO and a former Baylor Trustee, said that Lawson Electric was eager to work with Baylor to provide a working solar array. “The system enhances the educational experiences of Baylor students, giving them a hands-on lesson with renewable energy,” said Crimmins.