University of Southern California (Emily)



Aug '08 - Jul '09

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    4.19 :: Solar Excursion

    Emily Kemper Apr 26 '09 5

    My classmates and I took a field trip yesterday with our professor to a solar array in the high desert East of Lancaster. It's attached to Bolthouse Farms and it helps to grow carrots. The array consists of 770 sun-tracking solar panels that produce a total of 1.9 megawatts of electricity per year. The array was created by a group called Regenesis Power, who worked with Mitsubishi Electric Solar to make the comprehensive system.

    We went on a tour as part of a larger group.

    Solar panels are so pretty up close.

    Another view of the array. The panels are "tracking" which means that they follow the sun throughout the day. They adjust themselves every 4 minutes.

    This is a picture of one of the 4 inverters which transforms the direct current power into alternating current power.

    After visiting the array, we dodged some Creepy Guy that tried to attach himself to our class and took off. We then went to a family restaurant type place in the middle of nowhere that sold every type of food imaginable, most of which is terribly bad for you. And I had a delicious ostrich burger! All in all, a great way to spend a Saturday...



    • Nam HendersonNam Henderson
      Apr 26, 09 10:51 pm

      Creepy guy and ostrich. Yeah!

      Apr 27, 09 10:00 am

      i adjust myself every 4 minutes too! (wah wah)

      Apr 27, 09 3:31 pm

      Apr 27, 09 9:11 pm

      wait, you need to create 1.9 Mw to grow carrots? maybe this is where the green movement went wrong...

      Emily KemperEmily Kemper
      Apr 28, 09 3:20 am

      No, actually, if I am correct, the solar array not only powers the farm equipment that irrigates the carrot fields (you know those big half-mile circular sprinkler thingys?), it also powers 227 homes. If I understood it correctly. And also, from what our tour guide said, the average home would only need a 2-4 kilowatt system for their electric needs. I think he said that translated to roughly 30-40 solar panels.

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