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Solar for apartment block - Practical?


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We are about to build 200 or so apartments for the aging and have a couple of rai of land over.  I was thinking of using the land to turn it in to a solar farm to power the apartments and other electricity requirements, but a Friend of mine advised against it, saying it's not quite what it's cracked up to be.  Anyone have any views/experience of solar electricity supply?

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37 minutes ago, robertson468 said:

We are about to build 200 or so apartments for the aging and have a couple of rai of land over.  I was thinking of using the land to turn it in to a solar farm to power the apartments and other electricity requirements, but a Friend of mine advised against it, saying it's not quite what it's cracked up to be.  Anyone have any views/experience of solar electricity supply?

I haven't personally got experience but I have looked at various studies and evaluations (alternative clean energy). I do appreciate that your concern may be different so  you might want to contact solar farm experiments elsewhere (not in Thailand) for advice. There are also a couple youtube videos which go into running costs etc. It seems that fauna can be a problem and sometimes expensive to solve and of course one cannot stop birds flying over, if you see what I mean. Also if one kills the local wildlife to prevent panel damage then that rather defeats the idea of environment protection, at least in part, in the first place. On the chemical hazard side, discarding damaged panels might also be a problem because they contain toxic chemicals; such as Copper and Cadmium Selenides, Hexaflouroethane plus others so there might laws governing them also.

Best of luck in the venture, if you choose to do so.

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8 hours ago, TKDfella said:

I haven't personally got experience but I have looked at various studies and evaluations (alternative clean energy). I do appreciate that your concern may be different so  you might want to contact solar farm experiments elsewhere (not in Thailand) for advice. There are also a couple youtube videos which go into running costs etc. It seems that fauna can be a problem and sometimes expensive to solve and of course one cannot stop birds flying over, if you see what I mean. Also if one kills the local wildlife to prevent panel damage then that rather defeats the idea of environment protection, at least in part, in the first place. On the chemical hazard side, discarding damaged panels might also be a problem because they contain toxic chemicals; such as Copper and Cadmium Selenides, Hexaflouroethane plus others so there might laws governing them also.

Best of luck in the venture, if you choose to do so.

Most of this info seems to come from conservative website(s) which over emphasise  the issues with solar panels. There are, of course, those interests who wish to demonise renewable energy technologies. There may be some issues of toxic chemicals during manufacture and end of life recycling, but very few for the user. If there were big issues with this, I'm sure you would hear about it.

 

Here in Thailand your issues are installation companies are rather expensive and selling surplus energy to the grid not so easy.

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Even if you can't do the whole thing, you might be able to do it partially to reduce electrical costs..

There are lots of solar powered  external lights that you could install such as  these: https://www.lazada.co.th/products/mpow70-led-pirwall-lightip65garden-street-decor-i1554208293-s4159572462.html?spm=a2o4m.searchlist.list.4.58cb3060zcomQm&search=1

 

Maybe install solar panels on the roof to power some internal lighting; corridors etc.

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10 hours ago, robertson468 said:

it's not quite what it's cracked up to be. 

 

Any specics there, solar is alot of things, and can be low maintenance if you do it right.

 

Problem is, there are no subsidies here so its expensive to get into and has a longer roi.

 

In some places selling excess to the grid make it well worth it.

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@robertson468 What do you actually envision? Power everything entirely off-grid, supplement your power bill, look green to your residents?

 

What's the building roof like, you could have gazebo shade structures with panels on the top, two birds, one stone.

 

If you go over 10kW installed panels a whole new raft of legislation comes in to play, you will definitely need a professional installer.

 

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12 hours ago, rickudon said:

Most of this info seems to come from conservative website(s) which over emphasise  the issues with solar panels. There are, of course, those interests who wish to demonise renewable energy technologies. There may be some issues of toxic chemicals during manufacture and end of life recycling, but very few for the user. If there were big issues with this, I'm sure you would hear about it.

 

Here in Thailand your issues are installation companies are rather expensive and selling surplus energy to the grid not so easy.

Well, whether it coincides with 'conservative' websites or not I don't know. The ideas came from a study of how solar panels could be improved and was not political. It was factual. Animals do tend encroach on solar farms. As tar as toxic chemicals are concerned, countries have different disposal methods and it was merely something that might be of concern in Thailand. I did suggest the OP get in touch with other solar farms experiments to get advice so that in itself shows there was no political intention. There maybe no means of recycling in Thailand, I don't know but these are all questions that the OP needs to ask before going ahead rather than later finding out it is against Thai law to do this & that.

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On 11/24/2020 at 1:48 AM, Crossy said:

@robertson468 What do you actually envision? Power everything entirely off-grid, supplement your power bill, look green to your residents?

 

What's the building roof like, you could have gazebo shade structures with panels on the top, two birds, one stone.

 

If you go over 10kW installed panels a whole new raft of legislation comes in to play, you will definitely need a professional installer.

 

Just to clarify.  You mention over 10KW introduces increased legislation.   By that do you mean it is more regulation over 10KW even if you are totally off-grid ?  I can understand why there may well be further compliance should you wish to have an on-grid set-up but off-grid , really ?   Also how would anyone know in an off-grid installation as to whether your installation has a 9.9KW capability or say a 16 KW capability ? The number of visible solar panels would not give much indication as the spec for panels currently available differ in outputs

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4 minutes ago, Excel said:

Just to clarify.  You mention over 10KW introduces increased legislation.   By that do you mean it is more regulation over 10KW even if you are totally off-grid ?

 

No, if you are totally off-grid you can do whatever you like. It's grid-tie where the fun starts.

 

Sorry for the confusion.

 

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