Solar Energy System Installed on Colorado State Capitol

Bella Energy's 10 kilowatt solar electric system on the Colorado State Capitol is part of the Governor's Energy Office's "Greening Government" project, which encourages state employees to be leaders in Gov. Ritter's New Energy Economy. Energy conservation and efficiency measures will reduce the environmental impact of state operations with the goal to reduce energy use 20% by 2012.

"This project is another example of Governor Ritter's promise to make government greener and Colorado a cleaner place to live," said Colorado Lt. Gov. Barbara O'Brien. "Colorado is quickly becoming a national and international hub for renewable energy technologies."

For demonstration purposes, the Capitol solar system is divided into two arrays of panels. One half faces south to capture the best of the sun throughout the day, and the other half faces west to capture the sun later in the day. This demonstration will produce comparable data to study:

  • how different orientations of solar panels effect energy production
  • how to design solar energy systems to supply electricity during periods of peak demand, like on hot summer afternoons

"Federal and state governments are the largest utility customers in the US, annually spending billions of dollars on electricity," says Jim Welch, President of Bella Energy. "The Colorado State Government is showing off how solar technology can help reduce electricity costs as well as carbon emissions."

The 10 kilowatt solar system produces almost 13,000 kilowatt hours of power annually, enough to power two average homes for a full year. An on-line data monitoring system will feed a kiosk in the Capitol museum, displaying energy production from several state renewable energy systems:

  • State Capitol solar electric system
  • Governor's Mansion solar electric system
  • Governor's Mansion geothermal heat pump

Once the monitoring system is up and running, the public can view production information about the solar project, including its environmental benefits, such as how many tons of carbon emissions were avoided and the equivalent to that in cars taken off the road.

Bella Energy is a solar energy solutions company engaged in designing and contracting renewable energy and energy conservation projects throughout Colorado and the Rocky Mountain Region, with more than 80 years of combined solar design expertise. Bella Energy, Louisville based with offices statewide, has installed over one megawatt of solar electrical projects in Colorado, including multi-family housing, commercial and high-end residential buildings. http://www.bellaenergy.com

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