Solar Panels at Denver International Airport

admin November 27, 2010 0

A solar panel, or photovoltaic panel, is a device that converts sunlight into heat or electricity. It is composed of solar cells that are interconnected to produce power. Several solar panels are required in every installation because each panel produces a limited power. These devices should be protected from mechanical damage, especially the wafer-based silicon cells which are brittle as well as from moisture that may cause corrosion because it may decrease the lifetime and effectiveness of the system.

Denver International Airport (DIA), one of the busiest airports in the nation, installed more than 9,200 solar panels in front of the terminal last year. This system can generate energy more than three million kilowatt hours. The photovoltaic system generates power that can support DIA’s network and serve more than one thousand homes in the city. It was installed last year and can be considered as one of the most visible solar arrays of the nation.

The photovoltaic system covers 7.5 acres of area. This is one of the country’s largest airport solar panels. Visitors can literally see it when they arrive in the airport. The panels are like mirrors mounted on the ground.  The main purpose of this project is to produce renewable and clean energy. It is also environment friendly. As a result, it has helped decrease the percentage of carbon emission by 6.3 percent in the past year.

The solar panels have tracking devices that can follow the sun’s movement to maximize its light and generate more energy.  The solar panels in the airport encountered a few issues last winter when the temperature dropped. It caused the fluid to freeze up and triggered an unforeseen problem. The project director has addressed the problem and the panels are functional again.

DIA buys electricity from Renewable Ventures, the company that builds and owns the solar farm. As they look at the advantages of the solar farm, DIA plans to buy it in the coming years. This is in connection to Denver’s action to promote green practices and reducing carbon emissions. While the whole world faces global warming, Denver goes greener to help mother earth.

The solar farm in the airport has caught the attention of many people. They want to know more details about the solar panels. Other airport personnel tour around the system to look at it and talk about this fascinating technology.

Next time you see a solar panel, think about the complexity of its composition, as well as the intelligence of the people who discovered it and the future of solar energy.

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