Largest Thin-Film Cylindrical Solar Array West of New Jersey Built at Plastics Manufacturing Plant


Recycled plastic can be turned into just about anything these days, and while it still gets a bad rep as a green product, now it's being produced with the help of solar power, making it just a little bit greener. In what is the largest construction of a thin film cylindrical solar system, Plastic Package Inc wants to make some of the greenest recycled plastic products on the market. The thin film cylindrical tube system, are created by Solyndra in the Bay Area, which is just up the road from Plastic Package Inc in Sacramento, so materials didn't have to travel very far to their final destination. The system itself utilizes some of the newest and most efficient solar technology. The system is a 208 kW system and can handle all of the peak energy demands of the manufacturing facility. This will also greatly help the local utility, SMUD, during the hot, peak summer months when everyone is running air conditioners, especially critical in Sacramento where temperatures regularly top 100 degrees F.

The cylindrical Solyndra panels are designed to increase surface area for sunlight on a 360-degree photovoltaic surface, allowing the panels to produce more than standard, flat solar panels. Plastic Package Inc had a white membrane roof surface installed on the rooftop prior to installation of the solar panels to increase production of the panels, but also to reduce cooling costs on the building with a lighter roof surface.

Plastic Package Inc creates containers for food products, as well as plastic products for the medical, electronic and retail industries. They incorporate recycled plastics as well as bio-based materials in the products. The panels themselves will be installed by local company Premier Power. Solyndra was the recent recipient from the US DOE for $535 million USD to build a solar manufacturing plant.

CORRECTION: A previous version of this article stated that the facility's name was Plastic Pack Inc instead of Plastic Package Inc. In addition, the article previously stated that Solyndra installed the white roof membrane. The article has been update to reflect the accurate information.

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Tags: California | Recycled Consumer Goods | Solar Power