May 4, 2006 - Long Island, New York - Nextek Power Systems, Inc. and the Town of Hempstead have announced the commissioning of the first commercial-scale installation of solar electricity Direct Coupled to Allen-Bradley PowerFlex 700 series motor drives, integrated in the Town Hall's HVAC system. Allen-Bradley and PowerFlex are trademarks of Rockwell Automation Inc. On the southern face of Hempstead's Town Hall a 256-panel, 40-kilowatt solar energy system is supporting Allen-Bradley motor drives without any hardware modification. The solar PV contribution carries 2 motors (a 40hp and a 25hp) during the peak of the day, seamlessly changing the power source to grid-supplied Alternating Current (AC) as the sun goes down, watt for watt. The electrical efficiency of the Nextek Power Gateway PV interface is 98%; this improves the capacity utilization of the solar by about 10% when compared to conventional systems, thereby producing out-sized results over the 20-year life of the solar array. A smaller PV array can now be used to generate the desired number of kW hours than ever before. This reduced up-front capital expenditure, combined with the benefit of the avoided grid power purchases, lower demand charges and other control benefits improve the Town's Return on Investment (ROI) by 30% to 40%, Nextek says.
Hempstead Town continues to lead the way in implementing environmentally friendly technology, stated Supervisor Kate Murray. We are proud to have installed a solar energy system at town hall that will reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and we are committed to incorporating alternative energy systems in to our overall power scheme.
The solar energy system was powered up at town hall through $260,000 in funding from the settlement of a clean air lawsuit by Attorney General Eliot Spitzer against the Virginia Electric Power Company in 2003. Under the settlement, the power company was required to pay $2.1 million for air pollution mitigation projects in New York State. The $2.1 million is being administered by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority to install solar energy equipment on government-owned buildings in the state.
For more information about solar power at the Town of Hempstead, please call the Department of Conservation and Waterways at 431-9200.
The Nextek Power Gateway directly connects locally generated power and grid power to electronic loads in a building. Nextek's Direct Coupling technology creates highly efficient, flexible, uninterruptible Direct Current (DC) power networks in buildings.
With 23 installations in 13 states, Nextek is the key interface for alternative energy sources in the stationary environment.