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Carlson Orchards Powers up 220-kW Solar Array

Carlson Orchards in Harvard, Mass., has powered up its two-acre, 220-kilowatt ground-mounted solar-array installation that will supply about two-thirds of its power.

The solar array consists of 1,050 Evergreen Solar ES-A-210W STRING RIBBON solar panels. The system will supply electricity to the 120-acre apple, peach and nectarine orchard by powering two large-scale refrigeration buildings and the orchard’s cider press. The system will generate more than 5 million kilowatt hours of electricity over 20 years.

The solar system is expected to eliminate an estimated 3,700 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year.

Because the array is located on slanted ground, careful attention had to be paid to its architecture, says Evergreen Solar. The project’s installer, Lighthouse Electrical Construction, worked with Stephen Kelleher Architects and its subsidiary, kWind, to design a racking system that uses variable length legs to provide a level installation that maximizes each solar panel’s electrical potential.

The inverter and the data acquisition system for the array were manufactured by Solectria Renewables.

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