Logo top left, menu across top with our 5 pages (HOME, ABOUT US, CONTACT US, FAQ, SOLAR SPOTLIGHT) - we’d like the page title to stay yellow/illuminated, when on that page (so the reader knows what page they’re on)
BANNER PHOTO (HomePage 1)
Logo larger, Phrase smaller on photo.
Look to the sun for brighter energy
Text/intro under photo:
Solar Concepts is an electrical contracting company specializing in designing and installing solar photovoltaic (PV) systems for residential, agricultural, commercial and industrial properties. We are located in Grande Prairie, Alberta and are proud to service our local area.
THREE BOXES Photo on top, then heading, then text
(PHOTO: HomePage 2) PROFESSIONAL We are electrical professionals with specialized solar training. We focus on the design aesthetic and performance of each solar array we install. [LINK TO ABOUT US PAGE]
(PHOTO: HomePage 3) LOCAL We are local to Grande Prairie. We have a comprehensive approach, taking each client from consumer to producer.[LINK TO CONTACT US PAGE]
3. (HomePage 4) EFFICIENT Solar energy is a smart choice in Alberta and we can show you that it is an excellent way to reduce your environmental impact and electricity costs. [LINK TO FAQ]
Green Energy Goals
We design and professionally install quality, lasting solar PV systems that enable our customers to produce their own power and reach their green energy goals. We are current with the latest technology and help you select the best materials for your needs. Maximum efficiency and output are the ultimate goals of our approach.
We focus on the design aesthetic while maximizing power production. We work within your budget to create an array that will harvest solar energy and energy savings long-term, while reducing your carbon footprint. Our team of professionals is careful and thorough. Design and installation of solar projects involve many details and we believe every one matters.
We believe it is important to diversify our energy sources and see solar power as an intelligent choice benefiting both the micro-generator (you) and our planet. We tailor our systems to the individual needs of each customer. Solar is clean, renewable energy that is an excellent alternative to carbon intensive fuels.
“I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have to wait until oil and coal run out before we tackle that.” - Thomas A. Edison, 1931
The Solar Concept
We help consumers become producers. Going solar means going from being a passive bystander receiving energy bills to being an active participant in your energy consumption and production. It brings an awareness of the energy you use and can inspire people to take further steps to reduce consumption. It makes sunny days that much more exciting!
Solar is a fast-paced world. We’re on top of the technology, products, [government incentives] (LINK TO GOVERNMENT INCENTIVES QUESTION ON FAQ PAGE) and electrical code standards.
You Have the Power
Solar is an investment. There’s an initial capital cost, but our customers feel a certain pride in knowing they’ve made a smart environmental decision. The benefits are long-term and it feels good to be a producer in an energy-consuming society.
Solar arrays require very little maintenance and are very durable. The technology is well-suited to the Northern Albertan climate and are more than hardy enough to manage even the wildest weather.
Solar Concepts is locally owned and operated by Mike Gray. Mike is a Journeyman electrician with 15 years’ experience in the electrical trade —over 10 years of them in Grande Prairie. In 2013, he completed his Advanced PV System Design Certificate at Solar Energy International (SEI) (LINK TO SEI) in Paonia, Colorado. Mike has a passion for renewable energy and a solid reputation for quality electrical work. Give him [a call] (LINK TO CONTACT US PAGE) he’s always willing to talk with anyone interested in the transformative power of solar energy.
We’d like two photos (one per project). When you hover on photo it goes faded and the project’s location shows up (Grande Prairie, AB & St. Albert, AB), allowing the visitor to click in. Once clicked, we want the photo rectangle to be on the right of the screen and rolling through a slideshow of photos of each project, with text on the left.
A page to feature some of our solar projects and their performance.
(PHOTOS: SOLARSPOTLIGHT Summerside 1,2,3)
Grande Prairie, AB
33 x 260W modules (with 33 Enphase Micro-Inverters)
Location: Grande Prairie, AB
Solar Concepts installed this PV array on a detached home in Grande Prairie. The owners have a young family and were looking to reduce electricity costs, reduce their carbon footprint and increase their home’s value and marketability. This is a large residential system as the owners were wanting to produce more electricity than they were consuming in a year. The system produced approximately 9,560kWh in its first year, exceeding the homes electricity use and the owner’s expectations. This array has performed better than expected, largely due to excellent southern exposure and minimal shading.
(PHOTOS: SOLARSPOTLIGHT St. Albert 1,2)
St. Albert, AB
30 x 250W (with 30 Enphase MIcro-Inverters)
St. Albert, AB
Solar Concepts installed this array on a 1985-built home in St. Albert. The owners had recently retired and were looking to reduce their carbon footprint, reduce their electricity costs and provide a good example, for their grandchildren, of the power of the sun. The owners were involved in determining the system size. Their hope was that the solar array’s power production would exceed their home’s annual power usage. This goal has been achieved and the system reduced their carbon footprint by over 8.7 tons in the first year.
Why should I install solar panels?
Installing a solar PV array on your property is an excellent way to reduce your environmental impact, lower electricity costs and increase your energy independence. You can take control of your electricity production and consumption and enjoy knowing that you are benefiting yourself and our environment. By generating your own clean energy from the sun, you are taking advantage of a renewable energy source while protecting yourself from rising energy costs.
Is Alberta a good place to have solar panels?
Alberta sees approximately 315 to 333 days of sunshine in a year, more than any other province in Canada. Our cooler temperatures mixed with lots of sun is great for solar energy production. A cooler solar module will produce more voltage than a hot one, making Alberta an ideal place to have solar panels on your roof.
Are there government incentives in Alberta for installing solar panels?
ALBERTA MICRO-GENERATION REGULATION
The Alberta Micro Generation Regulation allows you to connect your solar array to the grid and receive credit for the electricity you export to the grid. The compensation for your exported electricity is equal to the rate that you pay for electricity from the grid. So if you are paying 5 cents/kWh for the energy you consume, you will receive 5 cents/KWH for the electricity you send back to the grid.
* I would like the red highlighted words to be a link to the AMGR website, link below.
ALBERTA MUNICIPAL SOLAR PROGRAM
The Alberta Municipal Solar Program (AMSP) provides financial rebates to Alberta municipalities who install solar photovoltaic (PV) systems on municipally owned buildings or on municipal land. AMSP rebates are as follows, up to 10KW $0.75/watt, 10KW to 150KW $0.60/watt, 150KW to 1 megawatt $0.45/watt. Rebates cannot exceed 20% of eligible expenses.
*I would like the red highlighted words to be a link to the AMSP website, link is below.
GROWING FORWARD 2 – ON FARM SOLAR PROGRAM
The Growing Forward Program provides funding towards solar photovoltaics on Alberta farms. This enables producers to conserve non-renewable fossil fuels and reduce carbon emissions, ultimately reducing the environmental footprint of Alberta’s agriculture industry. Your project could receive up to a maximum of 25% of the project cost. Producers in Alberta with a minimum of $10,000 from commodity or livestock production income can apply. This program is for grid tie systems only.
*I would like the red highlighted words to be a link to the Growing Forward page website, link is below.
ALBERTA INDIGENOUS SOLAR PROGRAM
The Alberta Indigenous Solar Program (AISP) is a pilot program that provides grants to Alberta Indigenous communities or organization to install solar photovoltaics (PV) systems on facilities owned by the community or organization. The program supports solar power projects that assist in increasing Indigenous participation in climate leadership initiatives that reduce community greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. They want to transition to a lower carbon economy also by creating more sustainable community energy generation.
*I would like the red highlighted words to be a link to the AISP website, link is below.
How will Alberta’s snow and cold affect my solar array?
Many question if cold and snow hamper solar yield. This can be true if there is a build up of snow on your panels, but a properly designed system will shed the snow after a few hours of sunlight. The solar modules heat up and the snow slides off. Cold weather has shown to improve panel efficiency. A PV temperature decrease of 20 degrees celsius leads to a 9 to 12% increase in production. (Reference web article http://www.solarpowerworldonline.co…flurries/) The cooler your solar modules, the more efficient they will be.
Solar production is considerably lower in the winter months, than the summer months in Alberta, but this is due to the reduction in hours of daily sunlight.
The Northern Alberta Institute of Technology (NAIT) has specific information to address questions regarding the impact of array tilt angles and snow accumulation on overall system production.
*I would like the red highlighted words to be a link to the NAIT website, link is below.
Will my solar panels stand up to hail?
Yes, Solar modules designed around International standards can withstand hail traveling at 50mph. Also they usually do not take direct hits from falling debris, due to the modules being installed on an angle.
How long will my solar array continue producing?
Your solar panels (modules) are warrantied for 20+ years. It is usually a linear performance warranty, (e.g.) after 25 years the module will still be producing 80% of its rated output. There are solar panels still in operation that were installed in the 1970s. A solar array requires minimal maintenance, has no moving parts, and is therefore; easy to enjoy and benefit from for many years.
What is the expected PV energy payback?
A misconception about PV technology is that it takes more energy to produce a PV solar array than the system will produce in its lifetime. This is not the case. Recent studies of energy payback time (EPBT) estimate that it takes a PV system one to three years to produce the same amount of energy that it took to manufacture it. PV arrays are expected to last 25 years or longer, therefore; far exceeding their EPBT. Once the EPBT is complete, the array is producing clean energy, setting it apart from conventional, fossil-fuel based power generation. (http://www.homepower.com/articles/s…gy-payback)
What happens at night?
During the night, when the sun is down, your solar array is not producing power. You will be drawing electricity from the local power grid (grid-tied systems). Another option for grid-tied systems, is to install a smart battery system that charges during the day from your solar array and supplies your electrical needs at night.
When you have solar panels on your roof, you can choose to run your highest demand appliances and electronics during sunlight hours when you are producing power. This allows you to use the energy your array is producing, thus, purchasing less from the grid and lowering your power bill. As a micro-generator, any excess power you produce through your solar array is sold back to the grid. Your usage and production are monitored by your local wire service provider (WSP) via a bi-directional meter.
Who installs my bi-directional meter?
Your local wire service provider (WSP) will install your bi-directional meter free of charge. All micro-generation in Alberta is governed by the Albert Utilities Commission (AUC) in accordance with the guidelines outlined [here]. (http://www.auc.ab.ca/involving-albe…fault.aspx)
THIS IS CONTENT/DESCRIPTION FOR OUR DIAGRAM ON THE FAQ PAGE
This is the information I would like the diagram to reference.
Solar Modules convert sunlight into Direct Current (DC) electricity.
The (DC) electricity from the array is connected to the inverter where it is inverted into Alternating Current (AC) electricity.
The Inverter is connected to your main electrical panel to power your home or business.
The Bi-Directional meter tracks your exported and imported power to and from the grid.
Excess power you produce is sent to the grid. Your home or business stays connected to the grid to power your electricity needs at night.