On June 18 the county's solar panels atop the new East County Courthouse came online. After about six weeks of use, the array has produced more than eight megawatt hours of electricity. That's enough power to run about 260 homes for a day and translates to more than $700 worth of electricity. This clean, renewable energy source has achieved a carbon offset of more than six tons equivalent to 150 planted trees.
The array is made up of 156 modules made locally by SolarWorld in Hillsboro. Some of the power used by the panels is converted into usable power by micro-inverters attached to the back of each panel. The micro-inverters send data over the power line to a unit called an envoy. The envoy collects the data and relays it to a website.
This array is the first system initiated, owned and operated by county staff in the Facilities and Property Management Division; they are proud of this milestone in making our county facilities green.