Emergency response, crime watch and crisis task force demand availability round the clock. With systems running 24/7, high utility bills are a norm. In order to reduce long-term expenditure on this front Dallas Police Station partnered with METCO to implement a cost-effective solution with lasting benefits.
Solar PV systems were installed in the facility to meet 50% of energy requirements of the building. These systems were wired to the transmission grid sharing half of the load with the mains. This enabled the facility to rely primarily on the solar power thereby reducing electricity bills.
METCO installed 304 solar panel modules on the rooftop without battery or generator backup. These panels produce 98.8 kW splitting the load with AC mains. In event of weather changes and during night time, when the solar panels are unable to harness the power of the sun, the main grid revs into action. This serves as a backup for solar power. Battery backup grid-connected system was opted out due to the hassle of battery charge/discharge. This also reduces the efficiency by 10%. Additionally, batteries increase installation costs and require maintenance.
The grid-connected solar PV panels were up and running by the end of the project timeline delivering the same quality of AC current that is produced by the main transmission.
METCO performed an onsite evaluation of the building before proceeding with the construction. A lot of variables decide if a building compound is a suitable candidate for a solar PV system. For a solar panel setup to perform optimally, sunlight reception should be adequate and the complex should not be shaded by nearby trees or obstacles. Furthermore, a rooftop installation demands adequate space on the roof and correct orientation to capture maximum sunlight.
Photovoltaic panels come pre-engineered but they all have the following basic components:
1. Solar photovoltaic modules
2. Mounting racks
3. Combiner box with surge protection
Many photovoltaic cells are wired together to form a solar module. We installed 304 such rigid, flat-framed modules on the rooftop with a rated power of 98.8 kW. Thus, this solar PV system shares 50% of the power load with the main grid that allows the police station to save $12,503 annually and 141,691 kWh/yr of electricity. Surge protectors in the setup protect the PV system from high voltages caused by power surges due to lightning. Without protection, a system may not withstand voltage higher than the one it is designed for. This can lead to costly repairs.
At METCO we make security our utmost concern along with design and aesthetics to to gift-wrap the project. Our meticulous craftsmanship reflects in every work we do. Our partnership with the Dallas Police Station speaks for itself as we were contacted to install power upgrades across its four geographic divisions.
METCO’s expert engineers handled the solar PV system project effectively making ingenious tweaks customised to serve the facility well. The result is a reliable, functioning solar power source that is custom-designed for the building.