Going Green with Solar Panels

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Updated: 2/18/2013 9:03 pm
Hurricane sandy left 8 million homes without power, if southeast idaho ever had a disaster to that degree how many families could provide power for their home. Earlier today Summer Joy talked with one family who is going green and wants to be prepared in the event of a power shortage.

Kurt Myers is an INL researcher who works on renewable energy projects. His goal is to build a microgrid, which helps with small electricity production, includes a storage device to hold the energy just in case of an emergency and it is connected to a larger electrical grid, at his home.

We would have some on sight renewable energy generation and also keeping in mind that we would turn it in to the ability to run off grid in case there was a power outage for a long time," said Kurt Myers, an INL Project Manager.

This system is currently "grid tied" meaning it operates in conjunction with Idaho Falls Power. The eight panels provide about 30 percent of the power for his home each month. Myers also receives a credit for the power that the panels produce for being apart the utility's net metering program.
This means when the panels produce more than his home needs in electricity it is then sent out on the electrical grid for others to use. Myers plans to instal additional panels and batteries to power his house for at least two weeks without assistance.

We are trying to stretch field supplies for a longer period of time and the more you can use alternative forms of energy and things that are ongoing,  like sun, wind, and water that just helps us use those other resources for a longer period,"  added Myers.

Meyers says one of his biggest reasons for doing this is to help give him and his family peace of mind in case of an emergency.

The average household uses 1 kilowatt of energy each hour, but while I was there Myers said he was generating 1.4 kilowatts per hour. If you want to know more, click on the below link.


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