OAK RIDGE, Tenn. — Tennessee solar energy developer Vis Solis and the German Energy Agency (dena), dedicated its first United States solar project today with the Consul General of the Federal Republic of Germany, TDEC Commissioner Bob Martineau and Mayor Tom Beehan at the Heritage Center in Oak Ridge. The project was developed in conjunction with dena and Germany’s leading solar and dual-axis, maximum light detection tracking systems manufacturer, DEGERenergie.
“We are pleased to welcome such an innovative solar project and international partnership to Oak Ridge, a city with a rich history in energy innovation and leadership,” said Oak Ridge Mayor Tom Beehan. “This solar project further boosts Oak Ridge’s reputation as a cutting edge science and technology hub that’s open for business.”
Seven ground-mounted trackers, standing XX feet in the air, with 30 solar panels on each tracker make up the 50 kilowatt photovoltaic solar array installed on the duct bank at the 1200-acre Heritage Center industrial park owned by the Community Reuse Organization of East Tennessee (CROET). The innovative, maximum light detection technology from DEGERenergie on the solar photovoltaic system will produce 40 percent more energy than a traditional ground mounted system or approximately 91,000 kilowatt hours a year.
“Vis Solis is using solar energy to turn an empty plot of land into an income producing asset for our investors and the community,” said Carlos Mayer, CEO of Vis Solis. Vis Solis oversees the complete engineering, procurement, financing, operation and design of investor-owned solar photovoltaic power plants.
The duct bank is a small area of the Heritage Center that is not suitable for excessive and deep digging that is typical for a traditional construction project, making it ideal for a solar installation.
The Heritage Center solar installation in Oak Ridge, Tennessee is the first U.S. partnership in dena’s Solar Roofs Programme portfolio. Since 2004, dena has taken part in over 40 solar projects across the globe to bring together rising international interest in German solar technology and help expand global solar markets.
This project is part of the worldwide “dena Solar Roofs Programme” coordinated by Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (DENA) - the German Energy Agency - and co-financed by the German Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology (BMWi) within the initiative, renewables – Made in Germany.
The Heritage Center Industrial Park is a large industrial complex spawned from the Manhattan Project. This facility was formerly known as the Oak Ridge Gaseous Diffusion Plant (or K-25) and served as a uranium enrichment facility. The site currently serves as the center of the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) environmental restoration and waste management activities. In 1996, a Reindustrialization program was launched by DOE and the Oak Ridge community that focused on the reuse of DOE‘s former research and development facilities.
About Vis Solis
Vis Solis, LLC is located in Franklin, Tenn. and is a subsidiary of Vis Solis GmbH in Breesen, Germany. Vis Solis GmbH was formed in 2009 and Vis Solis, LLC in 2010 to finance, design, build and operate world-class electric generating systems. Vis Solis, Latin for “the power of the Sun” has strong experience providing state-of-the-art energy systems for roof-mounted and ground-mounted photovoltaic applications, including large-scale systems built on landfills, former military facilities and other redevelopment sites. The company has completed more than 40 megawatts of solar photovoltaic power plants in Europe and North America and has another 20 megawatts in progress. To date, Vis Solis has completed projects with a total value exceeding U.S. $100 million.
The Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (dena) - the German Energy Agency - is the centre of expertise for energy efficiency, renewable energy sources and intelligent energy systems. dena's aim is to ensure that energy is used in both a national and international context as efficiently, safely and economically as possible with the least possible impact on climate. dena is working with stakeholders from the worlds of politics and business and from society at large to achieve this aim. Shareholders in dena are the Federal Republic of Germany, KfW Bankengruppe, Allianz SE, Deutsche Bank AG and DZ BANK AG.
“renewables - Made in Germany”
The initiative "renewables - Made in Germany" was launched by the German Parliament in 2002 and is run by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology. The main objective is to contribute to climate protection by stimulating the acceptance and use of renewable energy around the world.
By showcasing Germany's technical expertise in the field of renewable energy and by organizing business trips to and from Germany, the export initiative facilitates business contacts between companies in Germany and abroad. The platform www.renewables-made-in-germany.com provides information about German renewable energy technologies and contact data of German suppliers.
About the dena Solar Roofs Program
The “dena Solar Roofs Program” was developed by the Deutsche Energie-Agentur GmbH (dena) – the German Energy Agency. Launched in 2004, this program, co-financed by the Federal Ministry of Economics and Technology, supports German solar energy companies entering new markets. Within the framework of the program reference and demonstration projects are installed on the roofs of designated institutions in different countries around the world. The installation is accompanied by comprehensive marketing and training programs. These ‘beacon projects’ impressively present high-quality solar technology Made in Germany.