Entire Vernon ranch powered by ambitious solar installation

Ranch powered by the sun

A Vernon equestrian retreat is pushing the boundaries of self-contained solar power.

The project, recently featured on the Solar Power World website, uses a 28.35 kilowatt PV solar system to power 100% of the electricity needs for the entire equestrian ranch property.

Bruce Goode, a retired cattle-ranch owner and airline pilot, recently purchased the eight-acre estate and built a 3,500-square-foot, multi-purpose barn, which utilizes its roof for the solar panels.

The main floor will be used as a workshop area with a tack room and riders’ lounge, while the upper floor and loft will be used as a “hunting lodge/cowboy shack” themed retreat and entertainment area. It will also include a hobby/work area for gunsmithing and another area for exercising.

The structure was placed for maximum solar efficiency and used as many fire-resistant materials as possible.

The ridge line of the barn roof was oriented exactly due east/west, to afford maximum solar gain for the 90 solar panel system.

A metal roof was chosen, because it's the only material with a service life that exceeds that of the solar system and also for its safety in case of a wildfire.

The timber frame structure's engineering and design was done by architects Marcus Weiss and Daniel Kilchenmann of European Timberframe Corp., while the general contractor was Woodstyle Homes – both of Vernon.

Roofing contractor Artisan Roofing and solar installer Roost Solar are also local.

The solar modules were manufactured by Canadian Solar and are 315W mono-crystalline modules, while the three inverters are SolarEdge HD Wave inverters 7,600W each.

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