What is the Northside AZTLAN Solar Microgrid?
Commissioned in April 2023, the Northside AZTLAN Solar Microgrid is part of a larger endeavor for natural disaster response and solar microgrid research! It’s no secret that Northern Colorado weather can be very extreme and lead to serious natural emergencies. Therefore, climate leaders have been working with first responders in Northern Colorado to find solutions for power outages and effective ways to sustain constant communications during natural emergencies. Located in the heart of Fort Collins, the AZTLAN Community Center acts as the perfect hub for first responders and a haven for citizens. With ample surface area for rooftop solar energy and space indoors for various operations, the Northside AZTLAN Solar Microgrid will yield incredible data for future projects like it throughout Colorado!
How can this Solar Microgrid help first responders during an emergency?
Wildfires can be a frequent occurrence in Northern Colorado. During those emergencies, power lines can burn or fall down, so electric companies are likely to shut off the power before that even happens. Scenarios like this pose a severe threat to citizens and first responders in times of great electrical need, for example, communication, heat, plumbing, etc. To combat this issue, the Northside AZTLAN Solar Microgrid has added 120 kW of battery backup storage to its existing 54 kW rooftop solar array and three 40 kW power converters to complete the microgrid energy system. Therefore, the community center will function with 100% solar and battery power. Allowing the AZTLAN Community Center to serve as a central hub for first responders to coordinate operations with constant sustainable energy. This is crucial during emergencies and necessary for the safety of our citizens.
Renewable Energy Research and Load Demand Management
With every new and innovative solution, there are going to be learning curves that come with it. This is something that the City of Fort Collins is counting on to better understand how solar microgrids operate and how they can be utilized in different ways. The City of Fort Collins has some significant energy goals. In order to utilize 100% renewable energy by 2030, ample research must be done, and creative solutions must be generated. Microgrid Control Solutions company, Ageto, constructed this microgrid using a software called HOMER to optimize the energy production and regulation of this solar resistance system. With this software, we can monitor and track the system’s consumption rates, discharge points, and overall efficiency.
Check out this article by HOMER about the Northside AZTLAN Solar Microgrid to learn more about the Microgrid operations!
Sandbox Solar Commercial Battery Backup Installation
As the long-time chosen solar installation company by the City of Fort Collins and Fort Collins Utilities, our commitment to quality, value, and professionalism is unmatched in Northern Colorado. Because of these core values, Sandbox Solar has the skills and knowledge to outfit all shapes and sizes of commercial projects with solar battery backup storage efficiency and effectively.
From design to installation, we are the pros that have you covered. Working with the City of Fort Collins to create this micro-grid powerhouse was a pleasure; we are excited to implement what we learn in more Northern Colorado communities.