Math-Physics building will use solar and wind power to demonstrate renewable energy efficiency
WORCESTER, Mass. – Sept. 14, 2015 – Pika Energy’s 380VDC REbus™ nanogrid platform will be installed in Clark University’s Math-Physics building as part of a demonstration project to power direct current (DC) loads with a 2kW solar PV array and a small wind turbine. The project will test Clark University’s hypothesis that powering DC loads directly with DC power is more efficient than using alternating current (AC) power, currently provided by the grid.
“We are very excited to have Pika Energy’s technology for our DC nanogrid,”said Chuck Agosta, Professor and Chair of Physics at Clark University. “Very few companies have realized the efficiency and convenience of DC power. With Pika Energy’s products we will be able to build and demonstrate an efficient and resilient renewable energy power system for our classrooms and offices.”
Clark University’s system will be built on Westbrook, Maine-based Pika Energy’s 380VDC power electronics platform, which enables the direct coupling of DC power from renewable energy generation sources or energy storage to DC-powered loads.
Using energy supplied by Pika PV Link™solar optimizers, the Pika Battery Charge Controller™will charge and discharge 48V aqueous ion batteries provided by Pittsburgh-based Aquion Energy, powering LED lights, flat panel screens and a USB charging station. The system will connect to the local cogeneration nanogrid at Clark, installed in 1980 through the Pika Grid-Tied Hybrid Inverter™. The system will collect, manage and store power, while also drawing power from the local grid, as needed, and distributing excess power back to the local grid.
In addition to solar power, the system will feature a vertical axis wind turbine constructed by Clark students, providing another energy source for the system. National Grid is providing funding for the project.
“The Clark University project is another practical demonstration of how renewable energy systems are being enhanced by advanced power electronics capable of managing distributed energy resources, including generation, energy storage and DC loads,”said Pika Energy President and Co-Founder Ben Polito. “We’re proud to be part of this smart, clean power solution from which the university’s students and staff can benefit.”
About Pika Energy
Pika Energy, Inc. is a Westbrook, Maine-based manufacturer of direct current (DC) power electronics, including the Pika Energy Island™system. All Pika Energy products are powered by the REbus™ DC nanogrid. Pika Energy’s products provide grid-optional clean power that enables buildings to collect, store and self-consume energy from solar. Learn more at www.pika-energy.com.
About Clark University
Founded in 1887 in Worcester, Mass., Clark University is a liberal arts-based research university addressing social and human imperatives on a global scale. LEEP (Liberal Education and Effective Practice) is Clark’s pioneering model of education that combines a robust liberal arts curriculum with life-changing world and workplace experiences.
Chip Means, Director of Sales Development