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A Solar First, Off-Grid Solar Powered Elevated Water Tower

Solar Design Studio Commercial Solar Case Study - A Solar First, Off-Grid Solar Powered Elevated Water Tower

Problem; how to power a new 2.0 million gallon elevated water tower after it had been determined an electric utility easement could not be obtained to power the site. In addition, if an easement was obtained the cost to install electric service would be extremely high.

Solution, install an Off-Grid Solar PV System.

This was the problem the City of Kansas City, MO Water Department faced when constructing a new Elevated Water Tower. The project located Northeast of HWY 291 and I-435 in Kansas City, MO was constructed to service the growing area’s water needs.

The Water Department contacted the Solar Design Studio to evaluate the situation and propose solution options. The system had to be capable of powering the site’s electric loads, which included 24 hour monitoring and control of water pumping equipment, and lighting.

After reviewing solution options, it was decided to install a ground mounted system comprised of 7 KW of Solar PV Modules, 33 KWH of Battery Storage, 4 KW Inverter and optional generator interface. Outback Power Systems equipment and Solar World Modules were selected because of their “industrial strength” capability to exist in harsh environments and reliability.

The Solar Design Studio designed the system, provided all the equipment, as well as project management and commissioning services. JeanCO LLC, Raymore, MO, constructed the array and installed all equipment. The system was installed and operational in two weeks.

KC Water Tower Solar

Elements of the business case for installing the solar included the following:

  Solar Utility
Cost to Install $55,000 $100,000
On Going Monthly Utility Customer Charge $0.00 $16.45
Monthly Energy Usage Charge Range $0.00 $60 - $250

The solar option first capital cost was $45,000 less than the utility and there is no ongoing and escalating monthly operational cost. The site has a regular monthly maintenance schedule and the solar system maintenance is minimal and easily added to the routine, without additional cost. Battery replacement is planned at 5 years. The cost to replace batteries was determined to be significantly less than the monthly utility charges over a 5 year period.

Off-Grid Solar PV and MicroGrid systems can offer a businesses the option to reduce monthly operational cost. The Solar Design Studio can show you how the financials and technical components can benefit you. Contact us at 816.607.1349 for an initial assessment.

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What Our Clients Are Saying

Bob Solger is Mr. Solar to the Kansas City region. With a passion to forge change and be green well before it was cool to do so, Bob has led the regional market as an engineer and spokesperson for the adoption of solar energy. He completes his projects professionally and continues to inspire by teaching others how to get the most from solar installations.

Ace Wagner

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