Sprawling across 17 buildings with a peak capacity of 1.77 MW, the recently competed rooftop array at CSU’s regional campus in Wagga Wagga represents a milestone installation among Australia’s fast-growing C&I PV market segment.
Commercial solar specialists Todae Solar completed the array in six months. CSU entered into a 10-year financing agreement for the $3.2 million price tag, and will begin making savings in its first year of operation – with loan repayments to come in below the electricity savings which are set to be delivered by the PV.
“The system will pay for itself predominantly via savings on electricity bills and has been supplemented by a commitment to sell LGCs for the first seven years of operation,” Edward Maher, the Manager of CSU’s environmental initiatives told pv magazine Australia.
“There will be an immediate financial benefit to CSU,” Maher continued. “The savings in electricity bills and income generated from the sale of LGCs will exceed the loan repayments.”
CSU began work on developing the landmark project around three years ago. Todae Solar was awarded the tender in December 2016, with construction being carried out between March and September of this year.
The PV system is a part of the CSU’s broader sustainability initiatives. The University began Australia’s first Carbon Neutral University in 2016.
“The Solar PV project highlights and enhances our reputation as the leading higher education institution committed to sustainability,” said CSU Vice Chancellor Professor Andrew Vann.
CSU Green’s Maher said that the installation at the Wagga Wagga campus was designed so as not to require battery storage, the university will be “considered as a part of CSU’s proposed future roll-out of solar at other campuses. The system has been sized so that it generates less than our typical daytime demand.”
Todae Solar claims to have installed over 30 MW of rooftop PV to Australian businesses nationally.
A video of the array can be see here: