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University To Install Largest Single Roof-mounted Solar Panel Array In UK HEI Sector

The University of the West of England (UWE Bristol) plans to quadruple its solar generating capacity this summer with an impressive 450kWp roof-mounted array at Frenchay Campus. This array is set to be the largest single roof-mounted array in the UK University sector.

The solar array comprising 1,700 modules (450 kWp) will generate over 400MWh/year of electricity to be used 100% within the Frenchay Campus.

It is to be installed on the roof of the University Enterprise Zone (UEZ) and the Bristol Robotics Laboratory (BRL) in 'T' block as the building is refurbished and the Enterprise Zone takes shape. The Solar PV array will cover the roof of the 10,000 square metre building, and it is hoped it will generate up to half of the energy consumed per year within the building by BRL and the UEZ, both of which are very energy intensive areas of activity.

Fabia Jeddere-Fisher, from UWE Bristol, said, “The University will use 100% of the power generated by the PV array, so we are not expecting to return any energy back to the grid.

“From its conception, we chose a roofing system that would mean the flat roof would not need to be strengthened if we chose to add solar panels. Normally, panels placed on flat roofs require either weighing down, and in turn extra strengthening may be needed, or fixings that penetrate the roof membrane, which can introduce the risk of leaks. The system we have chosen means that the panels are welded into place, reducing load, and reducing the need for roof penetrations and thereby risk of leaks.

UWE Bristol is proud to be supporting Solar Photovoltaic technology and through these actions looks to inspire the next generation of solar technologies and graduates to work in the PV sector.


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