SolarWorld installationCAMARILLO, Calif. — A solar installation believed to be the nation’s largest for a government-sponsored affordable housing project is utilizing high-performance photovoltaic panels from SolarWorld. According to the company, the 2-megawatt project owned and operated by the Housing Authority of the County of Santa Barbara (HACSB) will bring cost-saving solar power to more than 1,000 low-income families in the California county.

The solar installation encompasses 21 sites around the county, 250 separate structures, five municipal permitting jurisdictions, and three utilities. All told, more than 7,200 SolarWorld panels will offset 100 percent of the energy consumption of 863 units of affordable housing, including both tenant and common areas, and trim power costs for both HACSB and residents.

“SolarWorld is heartened to be part of a project that delivers the benefits of solar technology to low-income members of our community,” said Kevin Kilkelly, president of SolarWorld Americas. “Universally applicable, solar power holds the promise of putting clean, affordable energy in the hands of everyone everywhere.”

SolarWorld installer Planet Solar, headquartered in Santa Barbara, Calif., handled the installation.

“We are honored to have been selected by HACSB to perform this unprecedented project in our community based on our prior track record in affordable housing,” said Paul Metzner, chief operating officer of Planet Solar. “HACSB is a recognized industry leader in its approach to affordable housing and the first to embark on a project of this magnitude. We are pleased HACSB trusted Planet Solar and SolarWorld to pioneer this together.”

SolarWorld said the HACSB project is the latest in a series of affordable housing projects to feature its panels. In 2010, SolarWorld and Planet Solar collaborated on a 100-kilowatt system for the Housing Authority of the City of Santa Barbara. The system was the first multifamily affordable housing project involving solar in Southern California Edison’s service territory. SolarWorld’s solar panels also supply power to low-income housing projects nationwide, from Tampa, Fla., to Sacramento, Calif.

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Publication date: 10/03/2011