Large solar panels being installed at South Parkway and Airport Road..
Huntsville-based Redstone Energy Group, which provides renewable energy systems for municipalities, businesses and the military, broke ground today on a center to demonstrate its systems that harness the sun's energy.
The Redstone Park and Energy Demonstration Center at the northeast corner of Airport Road and South Memorial Parkway will be a "showcase of market-ready technology that's available," said Lori Severin, a principal of Redstone Energy Group who's responsible for new business development. There also will be educational information "on how energy is generated by the sun and managed by Huntsvile Utilities back to the TVA (Tennessee Valley Authority) grid for use by the public and by nearby buildings in need of that energy."
The solar-energy systems that will be installed and operational at the center:
• Parking Area Solar Assembly (PASA) - REG's primary system that features a canopy with solar panels as its roof. The structures provide shaded parking and electric vehicle charging stations.
The PASA system is manufactured by the company's partner, Outpost Solar, a company in Pulaski, Tenn., that designs and manufactures solar energy systems.
• Tracker system - A system that's tall enough for cars to park under in a parking lot. It also can be used in pastures because the structures are tall enough to allow sunlight to reach crops below and allow cows to graze while harvesting the sun's energy. The system tracks the movement of the sun.
Ground- and roof-mounted systems also will be installed at the center.
REG provides scalable solar parking kits that a company or organization can lease, own or "host" at no cost. With the "hosting" option, REG would own the system and sell the power generated to the TVA, Severin said.
The Redstone Park & Energy Demonstration Center will be open for public viewing the first of June, Severin said, and it's the first of other sites that will be deployed across Madison County.
REG's CEO is retired Army Lt. Gen. James Pillsbury, who was deputy commanding general of the Army Materiel Command on Redstone Arsenal when he retired last year.
"Projects like this will create hundreds of jobs for Alabamians," Pillsbury said in a release. The center, he said, is "a great opportunity to diversify our local economy and take Huntsville in a new and positive direction."
"We work hard to make sure as many components as possible are American-made," Severin said.
According to the company, the center, when completed, will generate 173,127 kilowatt hours in its first year of operation and more than 5 million kilowatt hours during the next 30 years.
The company said during the life of the project, the site will generate enough electricity to power 487 homes and cut more than 163,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from the environment.
Source HSV Times