Solar Gain at Juniper West Park

The irrigation system at the new Juniper West Park will be powered entirely by the sun.

When design for this park showed the irrigation kiosk a long distance from any existing Hydro service location, it was determined that a Hydro connection would increased the initial cost estimate of $30,000. Instead, the City took a greener approach - solar. The original kiosk was slightly modified to accept the solar equipment and battery rather than a metered Hydro connection.

The system is from Carmanah and came as a package known as the “Weekender”, commonly used in the R.V. world. A reliable 600 watt inverter converts the 12 volt battery power to the 120 volts that will supply the irrigation controller.

A 12 volt 115 Amp/Hour GEL sealed battery is used to store the energy provided by the sun. When the irrigation is shut down for the winter, this battery is to be removed and put in warm storage to increase the life of the battery. In the spring, the battery can be returned and the irrigation controller put back into operation.

A standard pole and base were used with a custom aluminum mounting plate to hold the panel at the correct angle on the pole.

The cost of this installation, including labour, was less than $17,000, and will incur no ongoing Hydro charges. For a park that only needs power for irrigation, this option will save on those types of charges, particularly in the winter.      

Solar Panel and Controller Specifications
Solar Cell TypeMonocrystalline
Output power160 W
Rated current8.84 A
Rated DC voltage18.42 V
Open-circuit voltage22.77 V
Module efficiency16.4%
ConnectivityMC4 connectors
Solar controller30 A PWM, multi-battery option, 4 stage charging, digital display, and flush mount
Frame typeClean anodized aluminum frame
Dimensions59.1 x 26.3 x 1.57 in / 1500 x 668 x 40 mm
Weight32 lbs / 14.5 kg
Warranty25 years power output (module) / 5 years (controller)