Solar power has huge potential and as the technology develops, it becomes more and more efficient and financially sustainable.
Jaguar Land Rover is the latest automaker to install solar panels on their new state-of-the art Engine Manufacturing Centre at i54 South Staffordshire, making it the UK’s largest rooftop solar panel array.
More than 21,000 photovoltaic panels were installed, with a capacity of 5.8MW, and the plan is to increase this to over 6.3MW by the end of the year.
The system is expected to generate more than 30% of the Engine Manufacturing Centre’s energy requirements, reducing the plant’s CO2 footprint by over 2,400 tonnes per year.
The state-of-the-art Engine Manufacturing Centre is the first new plant that Jaguar Land Rover has built from the ground up and it will manufacture the first family of premium, advanced technology engines, Ingenium, designed and built in-house by Jaguar Land Rover for exclusive use in the company’s future vehicles.
In addition to solar panels, Jaguar Land Rover plans to create an ecological corridor across the bottom of its site, and the plan is to install features such as boxes, habitat piles, dead wood stumps and insect houses to encourage small mammals, invertebrates, amphibians, bats and birds to the site.
We really like this approach and hope to see other plants in every possible niche to make their own steps of going more ecological.
The biggest solar panel installation in the automotive industry is currently at SEAT’s Martorell factory with 53,000 solar panels, covering a 270,000 square metre area – equivalent to 40 football pitches and generating 15,000,000 kWh per year.