Solar Solutions

Harvesting storing and using all that free energy that is currently going to waste

SOLAR

Reducing energy costs and emissions

Together with our partners, including manufacturers, engineers, funders, energy companies etc, we facilitate funded renewable energy solutions for companies, landowners and regional governments who wish to incorporate solar onto buildings, structures and land.

How we achieve this will depend upon the size and type of the installation and the type of funding available to the client.

Solar installation types

Solar installations can one of, or a combination of the following.

  • On building rooftops
  • On land surrounding the building, for example, solar-powered carports and canopies over the building’s parking spaces
  • On land, possible adjacent or nearby, such as a business park for example, or even at a remote site such as a solar farm that can be connected to the national grid.

Without capital expenditure

Using funding and finance for renewable energy projects is a cost and tax efficient way of reducing your energy bills and your carbon footprint without having to use company capital to do so. There are several types of funding that your project could use, the type of funding depending on the size of the installation and the customer’s preferences. The Funding & Finance page explains your funding options in more detail.

    How should you proceed? Which is the best option for you?

      • Solar roof only
        If you own commercial buildings in the UK and just want to have solar on your roof, is no more than 11,000 square meters, and don’t want delays of obtaining planning permission the UK SME Solar Scheme is the best choice. All you need to do is to share your last year’s energy bills. We will conduct an initial remote survey and present you with an Initial Impact Assessment Report outlining your reduced electricity payment and carbon emissions savings, year-by-year and cumulative over the life of the scheme and beyond.
    • Combination of solar systems
      Including into the installation mix, additional tech such as solar car-ports and land based projects (see below) are more complicated and may require planning permission. As these are usually larger scale installations then we would go down the ‘Commercial/Infrastructure‘ route with one or more funding options to suit the customer.

     

    Project options

      Which is the best option for you? This will depend on how quickly you want to adopt renewable energy, the size of the planned installation, how its going to be funded, etc. 

      • Solar roof only
        If you own commercial buildings in the UK and just want to have solar on your roof, is no more than 11,000 square meters*, and don’t want delays of obtaining planning permission the UK SME Solar Scheme is the best choice. All you need to do is to share your last year’s energy bills. We will conduct an initial remote survey and present you with an Initial Impact Assessment Report outlining your reduced electricity payment and carbon emissions savings, year-by-year and cumulative over the life of the scheme and beyond.

        * Trafalgar square is 12,000 square meters. A typical English premier league football pitch is around 7,000 square metres

      • Combination of solar systems
        Including into the installation mix, additional tech such as solar car-ports and land based projects (see below) are more complicated and may require planning permission. As these are usually larger scale installations then we would go down the ‘Commercial/Infrastructure‘ route with one or more funding options to suit the customer.

       

      Our process

      Our initial stage is to discuss our customer’s aims, ambitions and priorities regarding:

      • energy security,
      • energy cost savings
      • reduction in greenhouse gasses
      • business sustainability

      Together with our engineers we then construct and present a solid business case for a renewable sustainable energy solution, taking into account:

      • opportunities to maximise benefits using existing buildings, structures and land
      • the future reduction in energy costs to increase profitability and  financial responsibilities.
      • making significant carbon savings by reducing emissions

      Rooftop mounted solar installations

      • Commercial installations typically range from 50kW to 5MW capacity.
      • Roughly 1kW is 3 Sq. meter therefore 100kW is 300 Sq. metres
      • Desktop assessment of Solar PV generating capacity and annual yield must be calculated for each individual site.
      • Number of planning considerations including permitted development, grid capacity for connection, lease planning, structural consideration .
      • Local distribution network operator (DNO) must be consulted before grid connection of sites with capacity greater than 16 amps per phase .

       Rooftop feasibility criteria

      • Space for erection of scaffolding and delivery point for panels
      • Roof Spaces (combined) to fit a minimum of 400m2 ( 2x average tennis court)
      • Flat roofs ideal, trapezoidal and sloped also good
      • Shaded areas not suitable
      • Skylights, age and condition are considerations
      • Fibre, metal, cement and tile roofs are suitable, asbestos and wood is not
      • High energy demand £200k spend on electricity per year

      Ground and structure mounted solar panel installations

      • Solar Farms are typically in the range of 2MW to 50 MW. 1 MW is equivalent of approx. 5 Acres.
      • Usually installed on unused farmland or brown field land.
      • Desktop assessment of Solar PV generating capacity and annual yield must be calculated for each individual site.
      • Number of planning considerations including visual impact, proximity to grid for connection, lease planning, agricultural impact.
      • Local distribution network operator (DNO) must be consulted before grid connection of sites. A connection charge will apply

      Ground and structure mounted feasibility criteria

      • Car parks for car ports are ideal
      • Land free from shade and tall trees,
      • Phone masts, and tall structures are ideal
      • High energy demand with a minimum of £300k spend on electric bills each year.

      Ground and structure mounted solar panel installations

      • Solar PV installations comes in the form of rooftop installations, car ports or solar farms.
      • A ‘private wire’ project avoiding transmission and CCL costs can result in significant carbon and cost savings & insulate against rising costs
      • Ideal projects include: Hospitals, Hotels, Large schools, Factories, Any entity with a large spend on power (several hundred thousand pounds a year) and space on or nearby for the solar panels .

        UK SME's Solar Scheme

        The purpose of this scheme is to enable small and medium-sized businesses with up to 11,000 square meters of useable roof area to install roof-mounted solar harvesting to reduce energy costs and become more environmentally friendly at zero capital expenditure and zero net annual cost.

        • Produce as much free energy as the roofspace will provide
        • No capital expenditure required with all funding costs covered by the energy bill savings
        • No need to switch energy supplier, you only pay them for the reduced amount of energy they supply

        Technical talk & vocabulary

        Irradiation
        Process by which the solar panels are exposed to the sun’s radiation. Effectively how much power can be harnessed by a particular system.

        Photovoltaic
        A method of converting solar energy into direct current electricity.

        kWp (Unit)
        Kilowatt peak, the output achieved by a solar module at full solar radiation.

        kWh (Unit)
        Kilowatt hour, unit of energy equivalent to one kilowatt (1 kW) of power expended for one hour.

        MWp (Unit)
        Megawatt peak, the output achieved by a solar module at full solar radiation. 1 MW is 1000 kW

        MWh (Unit)
        Megawatt hour, unit of energy equivalent to one Megawatt (1 MW) of power expended for one hour.

        Inverter
        Converts direct current (DC) electricity into alternating current (AC) electricity, which can be used by electrical appliances.

        Index linked
        RPI (retail, price index) running at a percentage inflation per annum

        Embedded generation
        Equipment embedded within a site, generating power through low carbon natural gas or via green generation technologies such as Solar PV or Onshore wind

        Private wire generation
        Equipment is located at a development nearby and power is provided direct from the facility via a “private wire”

        Off Grid
        providing a dedicated power plant and not being connected to the local or National energy networks.

         

        Facts and Figures

        • Solar panels have an efficiency in the range of 12-35% (amount of energy converted to electricity
        • The panels also degrade and lose production by a factor of 0.25-0.5% each year.
        • Amount of power generated year round will vary, therefore specific annual yield (kWh/kWp/year) is used as an average for yearly production.
        • An average 1MW solar farm in the UK will produce approx. 1 million kWh per year or 1000 MWh. This will be more efficient in sunnier climates.
        • An average 100 kW roof in the UK will produce approx. 100,000 kWh per year or 100MWh
        • A 400m2 roof will save the equivalent of 43 tonnes of CO2 per year (equivalent of 30 houses)

         

         

        Next Steps...

        The next step is really just to get in touch with us with any questions about or your ideas about embracing solar energy and all its financial and environmental benefits.

        We are happy to walk you through the whole process from what “information is needed?” to “how long will it take?” to “Great! when can I start?” 🙂

        We look forward to hearing from you.

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