June was a key solar energy month for our project – Sunrise Solar of Chestertown, MD installed 50 SunPower 360-watt panels on the roof (here they are, at work). Residential solar is becoming fairly common these days, but we had a slight twist. We’d hoped to have a Tesla solar roof so you’d never know there’s a powerplant on top of the house – but it became clear that Tesla’s solar shingles wouldn’t be available when the time came to get a roof up there. So instead, we found another way: our architect, Charles Paul Goebel of Easton, MD, designed two flat roof sections large enough for all 50 panels, and so now you hardly notice the rack unless you’re really looking for it, as the before-and-after pix show. Phenomenally neat work, Sunrise!
Present status: we’re expecting to receive final sign-off from our local utility, Choptank Electric Cooperative, and then we’ll start solar-powering our construction site and a maybe a neighbor as well on the same transformer during the days! We realize our flat-to-the-sky solar panel orientation isn’t as optimal as tilting them would have been, but we’re still hoping our system will produce enough electricity to run at least the kitchen and one of our geothermal ground-source heat pump systems as needed.
Next month, we’ll turn on the HVAC system and see how all this plays out. More to follow!