Wind and Solar Farm Projects: A Gateway to Renewable Energy Future
Wind Energy is Blowing Across the Country
Renewable energy projects are underway at thousands of locations around the US and Canada. The major technologies in the renewable energy sector are solar (including rooftop and utility-scale farms) wind, geothermal, and hydroelectric. All four are receiving interest and investment, with new projects spread around the country, encouraged by a number of states’ Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS). These require increased use of carbon-free energy sources by utilities and corporations over time. Right now, the market for renewable energy stands at $64 billion and increasing quickly. More players are coming on board as climate change is now a more urgent priority for them.
While wind farms have occasionally been negatively portrayed in the news, wind power installations are going strong, particularly in the interior of the US where windy plains states offer plenty of open land for turbines. The AWEA (American Wind Energy Association) reported that the wind power project pipeline in the US is expected to grow by 40% in the near term, representing a record-breaking 39 thousand megawatts of new structures. There are current 199 wind projects dispersed over 32 states, with the largest expansions happening in Texas (8,500 MW) and Wyoming (4,780 MW).
Solar Farm Installation Projects Are Spreading Rapidly
Solar has made significant progress in the last decade. With better technology and lower costs for photovoltaic (PV) cell technology, investment in solar energy is on the rise. Photovoltaic solar is used widely on home rooftops and power farms large and small, converting natural light to electricity using semiconductor cells arrayed on solar panels.
Thermal solar farms such as our neighbor, the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System (virtual tour), provide heat-generated energy using large, focused mirrors that concentrate the sun’s heat and converting it into electricity. As of the first quarter of 2019, solar in the US provided enough energy for 12.7 million homes.
Large scale, utility-level solar, built on hundreds or even thousands of acres of land, is quickly becoming a significant source of power for a nation seeking alternatives to the burning of fossil fuels. The flexibility of solar panels means they can be installed virtually anywhere and hooked into the energy grid. They are especially attractive in rural areas where land can be converted to invest in small or large scale solar projects.
Tension Fabric Structures Give Solar and Wind Farm Projects Shelter
Almost all large scale energy projects are located largely in rural, undeveloped, or less developed locations where infrastructure (including buildings and shelters) are inconveniently located or not available. Whether it is a solar project or wind turbine installation, having an onsite shelter increases productivity and moves projects forward by providing space for personnel. They can be used to store inventory, equipment, and vehicles at the site, protecting them from the elements and providing round the clock facilities for higher efficiency.
Versatile Fabric Structures Aid Solar and Wind Construction Projects and Operations
Clear span and high clearance tension fabric structures (TFS) provide ample, versatile open floor indoor space that can be adjusted to fit project needs. Supported by a modular, sturdy, and lightweight extruded aluminum frame, these structures are easy to transport and install at a project site. They operate like traditional structures and can be wired for electrical utilities, accommodate HVAC systems, and come with several ventilation options. TFS structures are energy efficient, with the white exterior reflecting solar radiation in hot climates.
These highly engineered fabric buildings can be installed in remote areas on any surface, including wet, frozen, or rocky ground, with a number of anchoring methods available. When project teams just need a warm, dry, and wind-free place to work, the TFS is a perfect solution that stands up to strong winds, meeting local wind code requirements for temporary and long term use.
Allsite tension fabric structures are sturdy, durable, and reliable. The building’s aluminum frame is rust and corrosion resistant, with an indefinite life and a low maintenance requirement. As such, they can be used for a single project, or disassembled and moved to new sites as new projects come on line. Their PVC fabric membranes are UV and weather-proof, as well as anti-bacterial and mold resistant. The high-tension rounded structure sheds snow and rain easily, perfect for use in remote and extreme weather areas.
Tensioned fabric buildings at your renewable power site can add convenient, protected indoor space during installation of solar or wind facilities, providing a hub for project activities. They can be adapted for many needs in the field, including use as personnel work or rest areas, storage space for inventory and equipment, manufacturing and assembly facilities, housing vehicles, or even hangar space for aircraft. After construction is complete, they can remain on site as maintenance and repair facilities, for parts and equipment storage or for other uses, or returned at the end of the project. Structures can be resized at any time and are made smaller or larger by removing or adding panels to change the length of the structure.
Allsite Structure Rentals
Allsite engineers work closely with our client team to deliver the best building solution for your project needs. For more information on lease or purchase of a cost-effective tension fabric structure for your renewable energy or construction project, contact Allsite today at 888-599-5112.