Massive rises in energy bills over recent years have made the refrigeration and storage of produce an increasingly costly part of modern farming. The owners of Lavenham Fen Farm in Cambridgeshire, however, are proving that this need not be the case, using Kingspans Roof PowerPanel Modules to slash bills from the farms two potato storage buildings.
The buildings, separately housing standard and organic potatoes, require large amounts of energy to power internal cooling systems, keeping harvested potatoes at a constant low temperature. With electricity usage metered at half-hourly rates, this previously resulted in massive energy bills for the farm owners.
To tackle these costs, the farm owners used investment from Regenerco to help fund the purchase and installation of Kingspans PowerPanel and Safetraxx systems. The PowerPanel array, installed on the roofs of the storage buildings, comprises one thousand, five hundred and one, 235Wp Yingli crystalline PV modules and can produce an overall output of 352.7kWp, making it one of the largest roof mounted PV arrays in the country.
Robert Pickard, Estates Manager for the farms co-owners Abbots Ripton Farming Company, noted the impact of the system: We have found it difficult to produce electricity by wind or hydroelectric power, so PV is an excellent solution. The buildings are tall and the visual impact of the panels is minimal. There is also a secondary benefit of fitting the panels to the roofs as in the summer they trap the solar energy which reduces the temperature on the roof sheets below the panels.
The production of electricity during expensive peak periods is of great benefit to ourselves and to the consumer as all energy generated onsite is channeled directly into powering the potato storage facility.
To allow a swift and successful installation, Kingspans expert team of PV engineers managed the project from start to finish. From surveying the roof to confirm it had the structural strength to support the PowerPanel system, to designing and positioning the PV array to ensure it achieved the highest levels of energy output. To simplify future maintenance of the PowerPanel System, the Kingspan Safetraxx Fall Protection System was installed to enable safe access to the panels without the need for scaffolding.
Kingspan Roof PowerPanel Modules are capable of producing electricity even in low light or overcast conditions and can enhance the asset value and rental potential of properties. The PowerPanel system at Lavenham Fen Farm has been registered and accredited under the FiT scheme.
For further information please contact:
Tel: +44 (0) 1352 717 232
Tel: +353 (0) 42 9698500
Fax: +353 (0) 42 9698549