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Zernike solar panel field up and running

31 October 2017

The University of Groningen (UG) has installed 1,700 solar panels in a field at the north side of the Zernike Campus in Groningen. The renewable energy generated by this solar panel field will be used to supply nearby research facilities. The field is located close to the KVI Center for Advanced Radiation Technology, and will generate about 5,400 MWh of clean energy, which is roughly equivalent to the energy consumed by 120 households per year.

The solar energy generated (and wind energy) will from now on be supplied directly to research equipment for KVI-CART, including huge machines such as laser installations and the AGOR particle accelerator, used to accelerate atomic nuclei to speeds approaching half the speed of light. Generally speaking, research equipment of this type uses a lot of energy, much of which will now be renewable.

Solar panel field Zernike
Solar panel field Zernike

Panels installed by Groningen companies
After a tendering procedure, the contract for installing the solar panels was awarded to ITBB from Groningen. The project was carried out in collaboration with ENIE, also from Groningen. The University Services Department made the preparations in collaboration with the consultancy agency Deerns. The solar panel field will in due course be named, through a competition, organized by the RUG-Green Office. The 1,700 solar panels were partly funded with an SDE+ government grant. The UG expects to recoup its investment within 10 years. The field can be expanded in the future if required.

Sustainable University
The University of Groningen is working hard to raise its level of sustainability, with regard to teaching and research as well as business operations, renovation and new building projects. As a result, the UG is currently 15th in the worldwide Greenmetric Ranking of World Universities .

Last modified:26 October 2021 1.14 p.m.
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