The University of Buffalo in Buffalo, New York, recently launched a new solar project. Dubbed UB Solar Strand, this 750-kilowatt solar project from architect Walter Hood will provide power for hundreds of student apartments on campus, not to mention prevent the emission of as much as 400 tons of greenhouse gases each year.
“Even today, we’re generating power,” said Robert G. Shibley, dean and professor at UB’s School of Architecture and Planning.
Located on the university’s North Campus, Solar Strand consists of 3,200 photovoltaic panels, made possible by a $7.5 million investment from the State Power Authority—an investment that project designer Walter Hood considered encouraging given the current financial climate.
“[Making an investment like this] means you have to be very optimistic and you have to have faith in an idea, not something that you know,” Hood said Monday. “This is something that Americans, I think we’re getting better at – being optimistic again, being able to go into the future and not know what we’re going to get.”
Designed to mimic the pattern of a human fingerprint, the unique solar project will be publicly accessible for visitors to walk through and tour, with “no chain-link fence surrounding” according to Shibley. At 140 feet wide and 1,250 feet long, it will also be used as a natural classroom for university students as well as local school kids.
From a financial perspective, UB Solar Strand is designed to save about $60,000 annually in energy costs, meaning the university will recoup its original costs within 125 years.
For more information on UB Solar Strand, go to buffalo.edu/sustainability/solar-strand.html.
(Image source: Buffalo.edu)