Thousands of motorists see them daily as they pass on Flamingo Road near Cambridge Street. But what, just what, is done with those huge solar panels throughout any given year?
The solar power generation systems are run by UNLV’s Center for Energy Research. Opened in 2001, the “solar site” as it commonly called on campus, originally was funded by the U.S. Department of Energy grant. The goal was to help students learn the theory behind solar energy systems and how to maximize the efficiency of photovoltaic panels. The center has helped companies with new solar technologies to collect and analyze valuable data and to develop enhancements to their systems. Students, meanwhile, are able to interact with potential future employers.
But the systems aren’t just for theory. They produce up to 100 kilowatts of energy, enough to power 20 homes when in operation, according to Robert Boehm, an engineering professor, and the center’s director. The power generated on the site is given back to NV Energy in return for energy credits for the university.
Funding for maintenance and operation of the site comes from federal grants and private sector funds.
The UNLV Solar Site is located at the Taylor Hall building on the north side of campus, at 869 E. Flamingo Road, just west of Maryland Parkway. On the campus map, Taylor Hall is building #53. The site is right next to the Rebel Recycling building.
It is on the south side of Flamingo Road, between Swenson Street & Cambridge Street/Claymont Street.
UNLV Solar Site
869 E. Flamingo Road
Las Vegas, NV 89119