The Pacific Northwest is not known for being sunny. Surprisingly, solar power is still a viable way to conserve and generate energy.  RAD has participated in this seemingly unlikely solar practice. Our comparative Solar Project is integrated with MOD 303. The panels themselves are located in front of the Mod, which houses eight people.

It is estimated that the average US citizen uses 20 gallons of hot water per day. Based off of these statistics, the panels should offset the power needs for hot water usage by 160 gallons per day.

Our goal was to test the viability of two different solar panel styles as manufactured by two different companies.  Both panels “use methods of heating that are variations of the same concept.”  Both panels were designed to produce up to 42,000 BTU’s per day, which, when collected, was to be distributed between domestic hot and a radiant heat floor system.  Flash hot water heaters supported by propane were installed as backup.

This project allows us to compare the two different solar manufactures and their success at offsetting the hot water needs of an eight person household.We have been collecting data from each solar panel to gauge their productivity. We will soon have a digital data collection system that will also broadcast the solar temps across campus.



In addition to the 303 solar panels, RAD has added 18 photovoltaic panels to MOD 303. These panels produce actual electricity to help power the MOD and are connected to an Enphase data collector which automatically uploads the production data online.

You can check out the panel’s production on RAD’s public enphase account here:

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