Solar, Utility Integration

Half MW Solar PV System for NJ University

New Jersey’s best-in-the-nation solar rebates continue to drive a robust market in the state. Monmouth University’s Board of Trustees said that installation will begin on the largest solar electric system at any New Jersey university in the next few weeks at Monmouth University.

The 454 kW solar-powered system, furnished by PowerLight Corporation, will supply the University’s electric needs with clean and reliable solar power. The solar electric system is a lightweight building-integrated photovoltaic (PV) roofing assembly installed over an existing roof membrane. The grid-connected system reduces Monmouth University’s electrical load, especially during peak demand times when the utility grid is the most strained — and electricity is most expensive — which benefits all New Jersey utility customers. The solar rooftop system will cover 33,000 square feet atop four buildings on campus — Bey Hall, Boylan Gymnasium, the Rebecca Stafford Student Center, and the Facilities Management building. The project will take about one year to complete. The total cost of the project is approximately $2.8 million, of which the University received funding from the State of New Jersey Board of Public Utilities in the amount of $1.7 million. University President Paul G. Gaffney II said the project will save the University at least $2.7 million in energy savings over 25 years. In addition to the financial savings by avoiding the purchase of fossil-fueled generated electricity, the project will spare the University and the community from thousands of harmful emissions, including nitrogen oxide, solar dioxide, and carbon dioxide, all of which are major contributors to smog, acid rain, and global warming. During the next 30 years, the solar-generated electricity will reduce emissions of carbon dioxide by more than 5,000 tons. These emission reductions are equivalent to planting 1,500 acres of trees, removing 1,000 cars from the road, or not driving 13 million miles on New Jersey roadways.