[ skip to content ]

News @ ODU

Rooftop Solar Array on Student Recreation Center to be Dedicated July 8

smarsill-sylvain-marsillacSylvain Marsillac

Old Dominion University's growth as a center of research and innovation into photovoltaic (PV) energy will take another step forward July 8, with the dedication of a new solar installation on the roof of ODU's Student Recreation Center.

Last May, Dominion Virginia Power selected ODU to be the first participant in the company's Solar Partnership Program. More than 600 solar panels were installed on the roof of the Student Recreation Center, and will generate approximately 125 kilowatts for the electric grid.

At 10 a.m. on July 8 in the Student Recreation Center's multi-purpose gym, the project will be officially dedicated. ODU President John R. Broderick will make remarks, along with Ken Barker, vice president of customer solutions at Dominion Virginia Power and Sylvian Marsillac, professor of electrical and computer engineering, and director of ODU's PV Institute.

The Solar Partnership Program was approved by the Virginia State Corporation Commission in November 2012. Under the Solar Partnership Program, Dominion will construct and operate up to 30 megawatts of company-owned solar facilities on leased rooftops or on the grounds of commercial businesses and public properties throughout the company's Virginia service area. Fully implemented, the program will generate enough power for up to 7,500 homes.

The 125-kilowatt solar project at the ODU site should generate enough power during daylight hours to supply the energy needs of approximately 35 homes.

Marsillac, one of the country's leading researchers into photovoltaic energy, has received more than $3 million in funding from sources such as the U.S. Department of Energy and National Science Foundation since arriving in Norfolk four years ago.

He received a $500,000 grant in 2012 to help test solar energy concepts on the roof of Kaufman Hall, ODU's engineering building.

Dominion Virginia Power is a subsidiary of Dominion (NYSE: D), one of the nation's largest producers and transporters of energy, with a portfolio of approximately 27,500 megawatts of generation. Dominion operates one of the nation's largest natural gas storage systems and serves retail energy customers in 15 states. For more information about Dominion, visit the company's website at www.dom.com.

Old Dominion University is Virginia's forward-focused research university for students who want rigorous academics and an energetic residential community. ODU's nationally recognized faculty challenge students to achieve their highest goals. Engaging and relevant learning opportunities teach skills for success. An entrepreneurial approach drives research and collaboration, and the university contributes nearly $2.2 billion annually to the economy.