The Dane County Airport Solar project is a 9 Mega Watt utility grade solar field located next to the airport in Madison, WI. Including Dane County Airport Solar, Morse has completed solar projects that have helped provide a combined 25 million watts of clean renewable energy. That’s enough to power 698 homes.
HARNESSING THE SUN
In roughly 3 short months this project went from a 58 acre grass field to producing electricity for Dane County homes and businesses. This photo-voltaic system is what is called a Single-axis tracker. That means that the drives and tracker controllers rotate the solar panels on a single axis to automatically follow the sun as it moves across the sky. This type of system increases energy production 15-30%. Work began in late August 2020 and we finished commissioning on December 7th 2020. Morse’s scope of work consisted of the following: medium voltage collection wiring, AC and DC duct banks, solar tracker drive and control wiring, fiber optic and communication wiring, set and wired the combiner boxes, and set and wired the inverters. Also included in our scope of work was connecting the string wiring to the 28,512 solar panels. We utilized one of our vendors to prefabricate the 2,117 XLPE cables required for this project, which greatly increased our efficiency and speed up our installation.
Split Loom Jumper
The switchyard is the interconnection point between the solar array and the grid. Morse Electricians installed 4 central inverters that take the 1500 VDC system and convert it to 13.8kV AC. The energy moves through the switchyard where it passes through a recloser and a meter before feeding onto the utility power grid. In order to maximize energy generation, the site utilizes a weather station to monitor wind speed/direction, temperature, rain, snow and position of the sun to control the position of the solar panels. At 9 MW, Dane County Airport Solar should produce an average of 18 million kilowatt-hours a year. That equates to approximately 40% of the electricity consumed at county-owned facilities served by MG&E.
Head End DAS and Weather Station
MEET THE FOREMAN
Mike Stadt was the foreman for Dane County Airport Solar. Mike has been with Morse Electric for 13 years. He enjoyed the fast-paced nature of this project and ensuring that there was close coordination between site personnel in order to meet the project schedule. As a foreman, Mike is always looking for new ways to use resources (such as prefab opportunities, use of different equipment and new material ideas) to give the company a competitive edge and offer huge time savings over the course of a project.