Solar Centre - Desert Knowledge Australia

Crowne Plaza Alice Springs, Large Scale Roof Mount, SunPower

 

The Crowne Plaza Alice Springs 305 kW solar power plant was, at the time of commissioning in February 2009, the southern hemisphere’s largest roof mounted system. It involved the installation of over 1,300 individual photovoltaic solar panels. This groundbreaking project is a joint initiative between the Crowne Plaza Alice Springs and the Australian Government. The initiative is part of the Alice Solar City Project – one of the seven cities selected for funding under the Australian Government’s $94 million Solar Cities Program.
 
The combined rooftop solar arrays generate nearly 1,500 kWh of energy per day or over 530,000 kWh per year, which is enough to power more than 60 family homes. Importantly it will provide between 40 and 80 percent of the hotel’s power requirements depending on the time of the year, reducing its carbon footprint by 420 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide. The project will also assist in reducing the total energy load on the Alice Springs town grid by about 0.5%, or 250 kW of the 50,000 kW generated in the middle of summer.
 
Alice Springs has the highest solar resource of any town in the country. Crowne Plaza Alice Spring’s location and building design highlighted its enormous potential to make a difference to its environmental impact.
 
Other energy efficiency and waste reduction efforts have also been undertaken to further improve the hotel's sustainability. These include installation of solar water heating, decommissioning of steam boilers, replacement of inefficient lights and fittings, installation of water saving devices and air-conditioning improvements.

System size:304.98 kW
Number of panels, type:
1326 x SunPower SPR-230-WHT
Inverter size, type:
52 x 6 kW, SMA SMC 6000
Maximum power output:280 kW AC
Electricity produced (annual):
530 MWh
CO2 emissions saved:420 tonnes/year
Total cost:AUD$ 3.3 million
Construction time:5 months
Installation completed:February 2009
An initiative of Desert Knowledge Australia.
Funding provided by the Australian Government and administered by the Northern Territory Government