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We have erected a solar array frame that holds the PV panels. The eight panels to the left each carry a rating of 300 watts, for a total of 2.4 Kw. Four panels are wired together in a series to provide 48 Vdc. An additional 8 panels were added to the right with a rating of 420 watts each, bringing the system total to 5.76 Kw. The array is adjustable for seasonal tilt angles.


The pictures above show us installing the 3Kw wind generator into place. The tower is an old converted ski lift tower. We have added a maintenance platform, and the tower is on a telescoping mast that is winched into a position between 35 and 55 feet. Keep in mind that this is well below the normal installation height of 100 to 130 feet. This is due to the topography of the site, as there is a 40 to 50 foot drop on the prevailing wind side and a deeper valley beyond that. The trees pictured in the background are approximately 65 to 70 feet tall, though only the top 10 feet or so are visible here.

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Above, you will find the heart of our Renewable Energy System that powers the Solar & Wind FX Design and Training Center here at Schaefer’s Acres. The top picture shows two inverters, each of which converts the 48Vdc battery power to 120Vac. This power is provided to the main circuit breaker panel, just like that which you can find in every utility-powered home. By having two inverters, we are able to power 220Vac equipment without the use of a step-up transformer. The second picture shows the battery bank and storage box. You will notice the red tubing that surrounds the batteries. This is part of the Training Center’s radiant floor heating system, which has its own thermostat so that we can keep the batteries at an optimal temperature of 78 degrees Fahrenheit. The box still needs to be insulated and vented to the outside.

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The above project is an installed solar tracker that is used to power a water pump that pumps water from a 13ft shore well, providing water for the Design and Training Center as well as the owner’s new Energy Star, Green home being built at this time.