SunAsia to launch Home Depot’s solar rooftop program

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SUNASIA Energy is set to launch the 100-kilowatt (kW) solar rooftop program of Home Depot establishments in Metro Manila.

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According to Tetchi Cruz-Capellan, chief executive officer of SunAsia Energy, phase one will be implemented at Home Depot’s Fairview outlet in Quezon City.

Home Depot will apply the net metering program of Manila Electric Co. (Meralco).

The Fairview outlet of Home Depot has a roof area of 5,000 square meters and can accommodate a 490-kW solar rooftop system.

About 1,960 solar modules can be installed on the roof with a capacity to produce as much as 643,878 kW hours annually given available sunhours in Metro Manila of about 4.8 daily.

Phase two of the program will follow immediately in the middle of 2015.

Capellan explained that the past 12 months were spent with Home Depot jointly planning with SunAsia Energy the installation of the solar rooftop.

“This project has been in the works for almost a year,” Capellan said.

Home Depot owner Napoleon Co and partner Victor Chan began by carefully reviewing the two-year energy consumption of their stores from 2013 to 2014.

Their study focused on ways to reduce the electricity cost of the stores, concentrating first on the demand side by introducing energy-efficient cooling system. This was followed by sizing up the most cost-efficient solar rooftop system possible for Home Depot stores.

Each component of the solar energy system, said Capellan, especially the clamps and screws of the mounting structures, were scrutinized by Home Depot to ensure the integrity of the warehouse roofing of the stores.

The efficiency of the solar modules and the performance of the inverters were also diligently studied to arrive at the most cost-efficient system adoptable to the warehouse stores of Home Depot.

The solar industry predicts more rooftop installations for commercial rooftops in 2015.

The Philippine Solar Power Association (PSPA) considers the drop in the system prices, as well as the reduction in installation cost, as the driving force behind the fast adoption of solar in the country.

According to Capellan, who is also the current PSPA president, the first 50 megawatt utility-scale installation in the country last year paved the way for improvements in the components supply and logistics of solar, resulting in lower overall system costs.

Capellan also said that increased confidence on solar technology allows the industry better access to financing. This should enable faster industry expansion with solar consumers enjoying  cheaper system prices and greater access  to financing.

Home Depot stores under the corporate vehicle of CW Marketing and Development Corporation were the first to introduce the concept “store-within-a-store retail selling.”

Home Depot has eight branches throughout Metro Manila with each store offering a variety of building, finishing, and furnishing products.

SunAsia Energy deploys state-of-the-art technology solutions in homes, businesses and industries located in urban centers and geographically dispersed off-grid communities.

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