New Terminal Garage Is Going Green
Solar panel installation is now underway on the Kansas City International Airport New Terminal’s parking garage. More than 60 solar photovoltaic (PV) panels have been placed to date. When complete, the garage’s south side will have 510 panels in place. A solar awning system like this will not only provide ongoing electricity for the terminal, but will also provide shade to the new garage during the hot summer months, further reducing energy costs. Once installed, this system will supply the equivalent amount of energy to the airport on an annual basis as about 20 average homes would use. The modules have aluminum frames around them and tempered glass on the face for strength and durability to last many decades. The New Terminal and Garage project will utilize 510 Sunpower 330 watt solar modules for a total of 168.3 kilowatt (kW) of DC power. The solar modules each have 96 very thin monocrystalline silicon PV cells with a copper sheet on the back of each cell which are connected together. These carry the electrons that jump to the cell when the solar radiation hits the front of the cells. The solar modules are connected in series strings that do not exceed 1000 volts DC. The DC electricity is then converted to clean, usable AC electricity by three 50 kW Inverters. The solar panels come from Good Energy Solutions in Lawrence, Kansas and are being installed by City of Kansas City, Mo. Government-based Staco Electric Construction Co. Click on the photos to view larger.