Billy E. Brown Corporate Center System
Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative (WREC) is investing in solar energy. We started our solar journey in 2009 when we installed a 3.15 kW(AC) ground mounted array with a single Sunny Boy Direct Current(DC) to Alternating Current(AC) inverter, using 18 Sun Power 175 Watt panels at the Billy E. Brown Corporate Center in Dade City. It was commissioned in October of that year. We have since expanded our solar resources with the addition of a 121.8 kW(DC) ground mounted array that uses modern EnPhase C250 micro-inverters for the DC to AC conversion, and 348 Mission Solar 350 Watt panels at our Crystal River District Office. It was commissioned on April 11, 2018.
A Photovoltaic(PV) system converts sunlight directly into DC electricity. The solar system’s inverter converts the DC current from the solar panels to AC power that is used by the member’s home or business.
The net meter installed on the member’s home or business measures the amount of energy the member uses, just like a standartd utility meter, but it also has the capability to measure and record the amount of energy the member’s solar system sends back to WREC’s electrical grid. If the member generates more energy than they use over the course of a year. WREC will purchase any excess energy at WREC’s wholesale power provider, Seminole Electric Cooperative’s, avoided cost.
WREC does not install or supply PV systems, but only provides an interconnection to the electric utility grid. A good resource for solar energy questions is the Florida Solar Energy Center, located in Cocoa Beach Florida (www.fsec.ucf.edu).
Crystal River District Office System
Frequently Asked Questions
How do Solar Panels generate electricity from the sun?
Solar energy systems work when sunlight hits a solar photovoltaic module (solar panel or PV panel) and causes electric current to flow. The current produced from the panels is controlled and regulated by an inverter. Inverters convert Direct Current (DC), which is produced by the solar panel, to Alternating Current (AC). Alternating Current is the type of current that powers the appliances in your homes and businesses.
How much electricty can I generate?
That depends on several factors.
- The size of your system.
- This can be estimated from the data recorded by the 3.15 kW(DC) array that WREC installed in Octover of 2009.
- Take your highest electic bill’s Kilowatt-hour(kWh) usage and divide by 125. If your highest bill’s kWh was 1250 kWh then dividing by 125 gives you 10 kW(DC) as estimated size of the array.
- The location of your system. The more sun that shines on your system the more energy your system will generate.
- The efficiency of the solar panels that are installed.
What is a battery backed system?
Battery backed systems use on-site battery storage to store excess energy that is produced. This energy is then used at night or when your system is not producing enough energy to power your needs. Battery backed systems add additional upfront purchase and maintenance costs.
How long will a solar energy system last?
When properly installed, a PV (photovoltaic) System should last between 25-30 years. Most systems require minimal maintanance during that time beyond keeping it clean (removing debris).
How to get started
If you are ready to begin the process of installing a PV (photovoltaic) system and connecting it to the grid simply fill out the downloadable required forms below, and return them to the address listed on the inter connection agreement. You will be contacted by a representative of WREC after your forms are received.
Feel free to contact WREC at 352-567-5133 if you need assistance with completing the forms.
You may qualify for…
By installing a Solar PV (photovoltaic) System, you may qualify for Federal tax credits. Consult your solar contractor and your tax professional to see if you qualify for a tax credit.
Withlacoochee River Electric Cooperative and its wholesale power provider, Seminole Electric Cooperative, reserve the right to correct, modify, alter, or change the below forms or agreement conditions without prior notice.
More Energy Saving Tips
For more information on energy conservation visit Home Energy Saving Tips and the U.S. DOE Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE).