Notts firm installs 950-panel solar array in Wakefield

The solar array at PC Specialist

A computer manufacturer is one step closer to reaching its goal of becoming carbon-neutral after Nottinghamshire-based EvoEnergy installed a 950-panel solar array at its two units in Wakefield.

PC Specialist decided to invest in solar technology as part of its ongoing environmental commitment to become a carbon-neutral site by 2020 whilst also driving down its energy costs.

The 235.5 kWp system will allow the firm to offset 96 tonnes of carbon per year, providing it with 187,900kWh annually – the equivalent generation to satisfy the average electricity demand of 57 homes.

The business – which can be testing up to 500 PCs at any given time – currently uses around 285,000 kWh per year. With up to two thirds of its energy usage now generated from solar, its owners expect to save more than £20,000 per year.

PC Specialist director Danny Williams said: “Though restrictions meant that we couldn’t have a system as big as we wanted, we’re keen to look into this in the future. With the saving from our bills, the feed-in tariff and the exported energy, we’re looking at a good saving on our costs.

“We’re pleased to be doing our bit for the environment too. It’s something we pride ourselves on, and everything we use is either recycled or reused as much as possible”.

The PV system – consisting of 250W Risen modules and optimised by Solar Edge technology to maximise the generation – was recently installed by a team of six from EvoEnergy. The project took two weeks to complete.

Solar Edge enabled systems separate all modules within the string to stop poorly performing modules from affecting the efficiency of the whole array. Not only will this make the system up to 25% more efficient, but the array is also safer and easier to repair should anything go wrong. The client can also check the performance of each inverter and module 24/7 via the free web portal. Being able to quickly identify any issues with the array allows for prompt remedy by EvoEnergy’s operation and maintenance team.

James Clifford, national account manager at EvoEnergy, which is based in Attenborough, said: “It’s refreshing to see a company exploring new ways to be green. The array is one of a number of EvoEnergy installations to use a combination of Solar Edge optimisers and inverters, meaning that modules are linked together in pairs rather than in groups of modules in strings.

“This makes it more efficient in the long term since shaded or soiled modules don’t impact on the performance of the other modules in the string. Monitoring at individual panel level also makes it easier to pinpoint any problems, so the system is easier to repair should anything go wrong.”