Safeco Field Goes Solar

Solar panels are being installed at Safeco Field — 168 Panasonic SANYO HIT® Double solar panels to be exact. They’re being mounted on the roof of the skybridge that connects Safeco Field with the parking garage. The work should be completed next week.

The project is part of the Seattle Mariners ongoing commitment to sustainability that includes electric vehicle charging stations, high-efficiency lighting and other conservation and eco-friendly measures. At least eight other Major League Baseball stadiums have some type of solar installations.

Rain or shine, the installation of the new solar panels began today.

The 32.76-kilowatt system will generate approximately 40,000-kilowatt hours of power annually which will go into the Safeco Field distribution grid.

Panasonic, through its recent acquisition of SANYO, a long-time Mariners corporate partner, has placed large screen TV monitors around the ballpark so fans can track the amount of power generated by the solar panels.

The panels are known as “bifacial” because they have photovoltaic cells on both sides. This allows them to capture reflected as well as direct sunlight, which can result in up to 30% higher power generation per square foot.

Solar panels are being installed on top of the walkway from the parking garage to the stadium.

HIT stands for “heterojunction with intrinsic thin-layer,” and the solar cells used are a hybrid with a unique structure made of a thin mono-crystalline silicon wafer surrounded by ultra-thin amorphous silicon layers. HIT solar modules are known for having one of the world’s highest conversion efficiencies and excellent temperature characteristics, allowing HIT modules to generate more power throughout the year, even in cloudy, rainy Seattle.

- RH

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