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New solar installation on display at University’s Agricultural Experiment Station


There are no bells or whistles, no flashing lights – just a very long row of photo-voltaic panels hidden in plain sight on the rooftop silently powering renewable energy research and experiments. The University of Nevada, Reno’s Agricultural Experiment Station greenhouse facility on Valley Road is now getting a portion of its electrical power from the sun.

WHAT: Media is invited to hear a presentation about the project, tour the facility and interview the principal project members.

WHEN: 10 a.m., Wednesday, Oct. 6, 2010

WHO: Mike Collopy, director, Academy of Environment; John Sagebiel, environmental affairs manager; Ron Pardini, dean of the College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources and director of the Agricultural Experiment Station, and others, will be available for interviews.

WHERE: Nevada Agricultural Experiment Station, Greenhouse Complex, 920 Valley Road, Reno. Yahoo map and directions: http://maps.yahoo.com/#mvt=h&lat=39.536394&lon=-119.809569&zoom=18&q1=920%20valley%20road%20reno%2C%20nevada

WHY: As part of Sustainability Initiative, this project is a visible example ofhow the campus and the community can embrace sustainable means of consuming power.

BACKGROUND: The 171 solar panels cover 3,000 square feet on the roof of the field lab’s greenhouse complex. On Sept. 1, the solar PV system began generating 30kw of power and should generate about 60,000 kWh of energy per year, or enough to power seven single-family homes.

The project is part of a $951,000 sustainability grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, obtained through the efforts of Michael Collopy, executive director for the University’s Academy for the Environment, and John Sagebiel, the University’s environmental affairs manager, who are co-principal investigators on the grant. The University worked with NV Energy to utilize their solar rebate program, the same program that is available to individual household power consumers, to make this project possible.

To view the solar power monitoring system, visit http://live.deckmonitoring.com/?id=unr_valley_road_greenhouse.

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