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YSU displays new solar-energy panels



Published: Wed, September 7, 2011 @ 12:10 a.m.

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Youngstown State University Engineer Ralph Morrone shows a new solar-panel system on the roof of Moser Hall. YSU officials said Tuesday the system will provide part of the energy needs for the building, saving the university $160,000 over the system’s 25-year life span.

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U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, D-17th, of Niles explains why the new solar panel system also benefitted local companies, who supplied some of the materials. Ryan spoke Tuesday as Youngstown State University unveiled the system.

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Youngstown State University President Cynthia Anderson told guests at a gathering to unveil the new solar-panel system that the university is committed to partnering with local businesses and industry.

YSU displays new solar-energy panels

By Jeanne Starmack

starmack@vindy.com

Youngstown

Youngstown State University showed off some new paneling Tuesday, and guests got to go to the roof of Moser Hall to see it.

It’s a fitting place for the new solar-energy panels — the roof of the university’s College of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.

“This solar-energy system ... provides a perfect real-world teaching laboratory for our students as they learn about new and upcoming technology as it relates to alternative energy,” said the college’s dean, Martin Abraham.

The system also will provide part of the energy needs for the building, saving the university $160,000 over the system’s 25-year life span, estimates Carbon Vision, the Shaker Heights company that installed it.

The solar panels, which cover an area the size of two tennis courts, were installed at no charge by Carbon Vision, thanks to state and federal grants.

The $350,000 system will cost YSU only $25,000 under a seven-year contract with Carbon Vision, said YSU Engineer Ralph Morrone.

“As a private company, they get grants and take depreciation of the asset,” Morrone explained.

Under the contract, Carbon Vision will own the system and the university will pay for power. After the contract is up, the university will own the system and will generate free power.

Not only does the university get a power boost and the students get a hands-on look at how solar panels work, but local businesses also benefit, said U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan, of Niles, D-17th.

The solar panels are mounted to the roof by a Solar FlexRack system, which is made by the Youngstown-based company Northern States Metals.

Ryan said another Youngstown company supplies Northern States Metals.

“General Extrusions makes what Northern States buys for FlexRacks,” he said. “This brings more jobs back to our community.”

YSU President Cynthia Anderson said the panels represent the university’s quest to be an urban-research university.

“It also represents our partnership with business and industry,” she said.


Comments

1lee(544 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

The system is worth $350'000 but the school will save $160'000 over 25 years, maybe they better talk to the math professor

Suggest removal:

2DwightK(1251 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

Or maybe there are other considerations besides a simple cost benefit. Let's see what the article says:

"This solar-energy system ... provides a perfect real-world teaching laboratory for our students as they learn about new and upcoming technology as it relates to alternative energy,” said the college’s dean, Martin Abraham.

Suggest removal:

3southsidedave(4780 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

This will produce cost savings that can be used to increase faculty pay structure?

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4Jerry(495 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

The article says YSU is not paying the $350,000. Who is??? I'll give you three guesses, and the first two don't count.

DwightK - What exactly are we trying to teach the kids with this example; how to make dumb decisions and waste money? Most kids don't need help with this; and breaking them of this tendancy is usually the problem.

Suggest removal:

5TheLostPatrol(755 comments)posted 2 years, 12 months ago

FACT (that the tree-hugging feel-gooder's don't want you to know): For every one (1) "Green" job created in the USA, we eliminate nearly three (3) regular "non-Green" jobs in the USA. Go Green!...the NAFTA of the twenty-first century.

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