Lighter Electricity Loads Keep Retail Outlet Running 24/7
Hundreds of shoppers circle through the doors of City Centre News retail outlet every week. But keeping those doors open is a full time job of its own, running lighting, air conditioning, heating, and ventilation systems around the clock.
Combating Rising Solar Costs
Local retail outlet City Centre News and its surrounding retail tenants run their businesses seven days a week, placing harsh strains on their financial resources. Eaten up by large lighting and HVAC loads, the buildings’ electricity supply needed a way to replenish naturally – and for a cheaper cost.
Australian Carbon Solutions (ACS Solar) had a solar solution that would utilise the abundant natural light of Australia. Assessing available rooftop space, which was narrow and inconsistent, ACS Solar was able to reduce the amount of solar needed by 4kW before construction even started by installing 215 tubes of LED lighting.
Smart Technology Simplifies Complex Designs
Before the installation process could begin, ACS Solar struggled with the building’s tight rooftop space that ran 120 meters long but covered a mere 6 meters wide. Previous solar installers had once quoted the building using string inverters, but were only willing to go up to 18kW. Though a fair call, given string inverters’ rigid restrictions and the site’s many issues, ACS Solar knew Enphase microinverters could maximize potential roof space.
Multiple surfaces spread across three different levels, pitches and azimuths required great attention to detail and thorough support from both ACS Solar and the Enphase team.
“ACS Solar is relatively new to microinverters, but who isn’t in Australia,” said Ady Millican, designer and installer for Australian Carbon Solutions, “and we truly felt that Enphase was on our team during this intricate installation.”
“I even worked closely with an Enphase engineer in America who ensured our issues were resolved,” added Millican. “The ‘can-do’ attitude of Enphase was a breath of fresh air, and the level of support and service I found with them is something I’ve yet to come across from any other manufacturer.”
ASC Solar was able to split the 29kW array into five different circuits to keep the voltage drops down to a minimum. The installers then used Enphase’s three-phase Engage cable to spread the solar power from the microinverters across the whole building.
Aside from the site’s structural challenges, shade was also a factor in choosing Enphase microinverters. Trees, antennas, AC units and other buildings cause shading issues, but even at the worst point of the day only 3kW of the system may be covered. As the sun rolls across the sky, shifting shade spots, Enphase Microinverters guarantee that only panels directly covered will be affected.
A Trusted Solution
ACS Solar relied on the flexibility of advanced Enphase microinverters to provide their customer with a solution that would maximise energy production and reduce their electricity loads. City Centre News can even track their array through Enphase’s monitoring platform, MyEnlighten.
“There are many companies that you can choose to associate with, but our relationship with Enphase is dynamically changing the way ASC Solar does business,” added Millican.