On Wednesday, at Florida International University’s Modesto Maidique Campus, FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg and Eric Silagy, president and CEO of Florida Power & Light, held a conference to introduce the just completed $3.5 million solar power array that is also a parking canopy and a research facility.
The 1.4-megawatt solar array is comprised of more than 4,400 solar panels on canopy-like structures that provide clean electricity to FPL’s grid and shade for about 400 parking spaces. The unique solar array incorporates a 24-foot by 12-foot FIU logo that is visible from high above.
Engineering faculty and students from the Energy, Power & Sustainability (EPS) program at FIU will use the installation to conduct important research that will help FPL advance solar energy in the state.
During his address, Dr. Rosenberg said, “We’re engaging in groundbreaking, problem-solving research to address the challenges of our region and beyond. Our students will get hands-on experience and see how the research they conduct in the lab will have an impact in the real world – gaining skills that will help them compete for high tech 21st century jobs. This solar power facility is a win-win for FIU, FPL, and our community.”
FPL is the state’s largest generator of solar energy and operates three utility-scale, or universal, solar plants in Florida. The company is constructing three new 74.5-megawatt solar energy centers that will cost-effectively triple its solar capacity by the end of 2016.
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