If you did some research into Chattanooga, Tennessee’s history, you’d see it wasn’t always such a green, clean place. In 1969 it was so polluted the Federal Air Quality Report called Chattanooga the dirtiest city in the U.S. Making history again, Tennessee is paving the way of the future with solar energy. The Chattanooga Airport is the first airport to be powered 100% by on-site solar energy. Calling the airport, “The Beacon of Green Light”, the city takes a stand to invest in clean energy and more adoption of solar in Tennessee.
The idea to make the Chattanooga Airport completely self-sustaining came up in 2010. It was approved, and construction of the Tennessee solar panel farm began in three different stages. Phase 1 was completed in 2011, and had an energy production of 1 MW. 3,948 solar panels were installed for this phase. Phase 2, completed in 2013, was 1.1 MW in size, and consisted of 3,542 solar panels. Both of these projects can power 85% of the airports needs.
Phase 3, which was recently completed, was over 500 kW in size. It brought the total generation of the Chattanooga solar farm up to 2.64 MW. With the final phase complete, the airport is able to run on 100% clean, green renewable energy, generated by the 9,432 Tennessee solar panels. The ultimate goal was to make the airport capable of running off of solar power alone. Thanks to this plan, that goal has been met.
Terry Hart, President and CEO of Chattanooga Metropolitan Airport said, “We’ll be the first airport in the country that can say we’re powering ourselves totally from our sustainability efforts of our solar farm.” He said, “What can happen is, at times, we can be switched off the power grid and power ourselves at the airport, which is a great thing for us, we look forward to that.” Airports are notorious for the amount of electricity that they need. With one less airport using fossil fuels, the state can be a bit more bright and beautiful with Tennessee solar panels.
The future of solar is bright in Tennessee. Sunpro Solar is excited to help bring solar savings and clean energy to many Tennessee homeowners.