• 36°

Solar excitement building over plant coming to Davidson County

By Paris Goodnight
Salisbury Post
Construction on the SunEdison solar power plant in Davidson County isn’t scheduled to begin until next year, but people are already getting excited about the new electricity source joining the grid.
Mike Beaver, co-owner and president of Beaver Brothers in Salisbury, said, “It’s very exciting for the community. Anything like that that comes out in the press gets people’s interest flowing about solar energy.”
Beaver Brothers has been involved in solar energy for decades, especially using the sun to heat water. Beaver said that use is a cousin to the photovoltaic process that converts the sun’s energy into electricity as the SunEdison plant will do.
Construction is planned to begin later next year, but the company hasn’t announced the Davidson County site where the plant will be built. Davidson County has a 2,400-acre industrial site being developed near Interstate 85 and is among the areas being considered for the plant.
With Duke Energy Carolinas announcing it will buy the electricity produced by the solar farm, the commitment to the area is clear.
Paige Sheehan, a spokesperson for Duke Power in Charlotte, said the modular building process will have some power being delivered by 2010 and then full power by 2011.
Sheehan said Davidson County has sunny days 60 percent of the time. She said that points out solar’s potential, but also its limitations, with power being produced only during daylight hours.
Duke Power’s only other contact with solar power is in demonstration-type applications. But this has the company diving into industrial-scale power from solar.
Beaver, who runs his family business with his brother, Trip, said much of solar power activity is seen in the research and development phase, such as solar-powered cars. But moving it from the lab, or races that are meant as showcases, to the real world isn’t easy. It’s been cost effective for years to use solar power to heat water for homes and businesses.
“You’ve got to put the capital out there,” he said.
But as energy costs skyrocket, it makes it easier to make that original payment to get the benefit over time.
As for solar-powered cars, don’t look for them on the highways anytime soon. Beaver said fuel cells and other types of power will likely surface first. So much surface area is needed to power a machine, even one made of ultralight materials. Such cars wouldn’t be very safe on today’s roads either.
“They’re something fun to do, to promote creativity,” he said.

Comments

Comments closed.

Local

City officials differ on how, what information should be released regarding viral K-9 officer video

High School

High school basketball: Carson girls are 3A champions

Lifestyle

High school, college sweethearts marry nearly 50 years later

Local

With jury trials set to resume, impact of COVID-19 on process looms

Legion baseball

Book explores life of Pfeiffer baseball coach Joe Ferebee

Education

Rowan-Salisbury Board of Education to receive update on competency-based education

Business

Biz Roundup: Kannapolis expects to see economic, housing growth continue in 2021

Business

A fixture of downtown Salisbury’s shopping scene, Caniche celebrates 15th anniversary this month

Local

Slate of new officers during local GOP convention; Rev. Jenkins becomes new chair

Landis

Landis officials narrow search for new manager to five candidates; expect decision within a month

Lifestyle

Together at last: High school, college sweethearts marry nearly 50 years later

Education

Rowan-Salisbury Schools sorts out transportation logistics in preparation for full-time return to classes

High School

Photo gallery: Carson goes undefeated, wins 3A state championship

Nation/World

Europe staggers as infectious variants power virus surge

Nation/World

Biden, Democrats prevail as Senate OKs $1.9 trillion virus relief bill

Nation/World

Senate Democrats strike deal on jobless aid, move relief bill closer to approval

News

Duke Life Flight pilot may have shut down wrong engine in fatal crash

News

Two NC counties get to participate in satellite internet pilot for students

Local

PETA protesters gather in front of police department

Coronavirus

UPDATED: Eight new COVID-19 deaths, 203 positives reported in county this week

Crime

Sheriff’s office: Two charged after suitcase of marijuana found in Jeep

Crime

Thomasville officer hospitalized after chase that started in Rowan County

Local

Board of elections discusses upgrading voting machines, making precinct changes

News

Lawmakers finalize how state will spend COVID-19 funds