Published on May 3rd, 2016 | by Jake Richardson15
California Winery Uses Solar Power And Energy Storage
May 3rd, 2016 by Jake Richardson
The Stone Edge Farm and winery in Sonoma, California has a 32 kW solar array, 14 of Aquion’s 25 kWh M-Line battery modules, and an Ideal Power 30 kW multi-port power conversion system. The solar PV array provides electricity to the primary residence, workshops, and offices. The renewable electricity system is generating so much power that some can be sold back to the local utility.
It is also part of an onsite microgrid which was designed for self-consumption, load shifting, and peak shaving. “The Stone Edge Farm project is an excellent example of how long-duration advanced batteries plus solar PV can enable on-site renewable energy generation and maximize solar self-consumption,” explained Scott Pearson, CEO of Aquion Energy.
The organic winery consists of 16 acres and is located near downtown Sonoma. Many organic vegetables are grown there too: “Living sustainably means cooking seasonally and consuming what we cultivate, including olives and olive oil, fruits and vegetables, herbs, eggs, and honey. We strive to be self-sufficient and to conserve our resources. Composting, for example, is vital to our ecosystem. Each year, we produce 120 cubic yards of compost, turning kitchen and yard waste into a soil amendment rich in essential nutrients.”
That an organic winery and farm would integrate clean, renewable and energy storage is not too surprising. On the farm’s site there is a page about its vision, “Stone Edge Farm is a work constantly in progress, as we apply new technologies to conserve resources. The farm is divided into watering zones that receive information from a weather station on the property. A smart phone remotely controls 150 irrigation valves and 25,000 emitters. With careful metering and monitoring, we have reduced our water usage by one-half.”
A sustainable mindset is not about remaining on fossil fuels or having to rely entirely on a grid that includes electricity generated by them. Self-sufficiency is also part of it and this can be an advantage when electricity costs are fluctuating.