Wonford and Shillingford installations:
News of their first year 2016
These installations were completed in November 2015 so we now have a complete year of generation data. We thought you’d be interested to hear how performance has been during the first year.
FiT registration has been a very long drawn out process for these installations, however the process is now complete, we have the pre-registration rates that we expected and our first FiT payments have just arrived, backdated to the start of the installation.
Our solar panels installed at Shillingford with Simon, the installer (left) and Wonford (right).
Wonford Community and Learning Centre
The system provides reduced price electricity to the Centre that provides a whole range of activities for the local community including – Bingo, Bowls, Aikido, Tea Dance and Line Dancing plus support services such as YMCA Job Club, Credit Union, Foodcycle and Bone Health Exercise. It’s a significant saving to them as it helps to keep their running costs as low as possible.
The installation’s performance has been slightly lower than expected, however usage has been significantly higher. As part of our operations and maintenance we will be investigating why generation has been 5% lower to see if generation can be improved.
The community centre is delighted with the system, the trustees expressed their appreciation for ECOE’s members providing the system by saying
‘We are a small charity in Wonford that run a Community Centre and lately the Phoenix Suite adjoining as well. All run by volunteers and 2 part time staff, The installation of the Solar panels have been a great asset for us as money is tight but the panels have saved us money which helps us run the site on a tight budget. The installation went very well and so far no problems. We do appreciate the effort put in by ECOE and look forward to the next 20 years saving money.’
The only difficulty has been with the display, which often fails. This is a shame as they want their users to see information about the solar array. ECOE is talking to the installer to see how the situation can be improved.
Wonford Data for 2016
Capacity: 20.5 kW
Actual annual energy generated: 18,585 kWh
Estimated annual energy generated: 19,600 kWh
Proportion of solar energy used on site: 82 % (predicted at 50%)
Carbon savings: 8,130 kg
Cost saving to Wonford: £838
Expected income to ECOE £3527, actual £3827 (over 13 month period)
Here, there are two different systems both with quite different characteristics. When Gill visited Martyn Bragg recently he was very pleased with the installations,
‘16 months after installation of 2 PV panel arrays on 2 separate roofs by ECOE, I can say that it was a project well worth undertaking. The PV panels have generated significant amounts of electricity, most of which we have used ourselves leading to considerable reduction in our electricity bills. The online monitoring system enables us to follow the hour to hour electric production from the PV panels and also our total usage. This allows us to match our loading for our cold store, bore hole pump, etc to the generation of electric from the PV panels.
‘With the project requiring no capital cost from us and minimal hassle to set up, I can say I am really pleased to have gone ahead with the installations.’
Shillingford Barton Barn
The larger system is installed on Barton Barn which has a big roof but low electricity demand used for cold storage and pumping water from a bole hole. We discussed with Martyn ways that the solar energy could be better utilised. An additional cold store installed recently and making sure the water is pumped in daylight hours will help to maximise usage. ECOE will also investigate whether a small battery might give good returns here.
Data for 2016
Capacity: 25 kW
Actual annual energy: 25,810 kWh
Estimated annual energy: 25,000 kWh
Proportion of solar energy used on site: 39 % (predicted at 60%)
Carbon savings: 10,704 kg
Cost saving to Shillingfords: £445
Shillingford Processing Site
The smaller system here houses Rod and Bens’ soup making, the farm offices and the staff kitchen. This makes the demand high, actually using almost all of the solar energy produced.
Data for 2016
Capacity: 14.5 kW
Actual annual energy: 14,410 kWh
Estimated annual energy: 14,500 kWh
Proportion of solar energy used on site: 93 % (predicted at 60%)
Carbon savings: 5,977 kg
Cost saving to Shillingford: £595
The energy generation closely matches that predicted at both sites. When we were predicting energy use we did not separate the two systems, we used a figure of 60%, which becomes fairly accurate when these two sites are combined.