King's Academy in Jordan Sends Power to the People
In August of 2007, King’s Academy, a coeducational boarding school situated near Madaba, opened its doors to its first cohort of students.
Today, King’s Academy is now the largest private boarding and day school in the Middle East.
King Abdullah II of Jordan, who founded the school in 2007, has taken a personal interest in the Academy’s development. His message is straightforward and clear – “…to develop and empower young leaders who will drive change within and beyond their communities, and eventually across borders…”
Today the school is home to 660 male and female students who enjoy some of the most advanced facilities available.
Figure 2 King's Academy dorms, August 2018
Recently, ACWA Power helped to facilitate the reduction of King’s Academy’s carbon footprint and energy consumption by installing a mixed system of solar PV (photovoltaic) panels on and around the campus.
Using a multi-system approach, ACWA power has now installed 15,772 square metres of ground- and roof-based solar PV panels.
Together the system generates 2.6Mw of power. It is structured to meet and exceed the energy needs of King’s and send excess output to the main grid.
This system yields huge savings for the school, ultimately reducing its energy costs to zero. The installation took just five months to complete, and the site went operational in the spring of 2018.
Figure 3 King’s Academy solar car park PV, August 2018
Some of the panels have been installed on canopies in the parking lots, creating a usable space for vehicles that benefit from sitting in the shade.
Other panels have been installed on the roofs of the gym and the main dining hall, and other clusters have been inconspicuously placed within the school grounds.
Figure 4 King's Academy athletic building roof PV, August 2018
The visual result is both subtle and surprising; the parking lots with their overheard solar PV canopies are perhaps the most obvious sign that King’s Academy has embraced micro-generation as a concept.
Figure 5 King's Academy ground-based solar PV array, August 2018
The discreetly placed panels on campus clearly demonstrate that such systems do not have to spoil the beauty of the campus. Yet they are efficient enough to meet the energy needs of the Academy and the greater community by selling surplus energy to the main grid.
The system is maintained by the Central Electricity Generating Company (CEGCO), which is currently monitoring the site to establish cleaning and maintenance routines for panels and inverters.
Figure 6 King's Academy car park solar inverters, August 2018
This monitoring includes detailed assessments of the local climate conditions across the year. From the data gathered, and visual inspections, it should be possible to work out the frequency and timing for cleaning in the most efficient way.
Figure 7 King's Academy athletic building, August 2018
This is another example of how much detailed planning has gone into every aspect of this project in order to make it as ‘site-efficient’ as technically possible.
This system of solar panels is both a practical addition and a demonstration of King’s Academy becoming a sustainable energy supplier while reducing its carbon footprint and guaranteeing huge financial savings over the lifetime of the installation.
As such, this project is regarded as a “renewables business.”
ACWA Power is proud to contribute to the ongoing vision of King’s Academy’s long-term sustainability plans and power the education of the leaders of the future.