Mitsubishi Electric solar panels to power food bank

CYPRESS, CALIFORNIA - Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA, Inc. has been selected to provide photovoltaic (PV) panels for the San Francisco Food BankÂ’s 55,000 sq.-ft. warehouse. The San Francisco Food Bank is one of the nationÂ’s largest, distributing more than 28 million pounds of food to low-income families, individuals and 500 non-profit organizations each year.

The San Francisco Food Bank collects donated food from growers, manufacturers and grocers, then distributes it to people in need through food pantries, soup kitchens, child care centers, homeless shelters, senior centers and other human service agencies with meal programs. Nearly 500 local agencies, including AIDS service organizations, child care and senior programs, community centers, food pantries, shelters and soup kitchens, visit their warehouse on a weekly basis.

The Food Bank showcased its new system recently at a special ceremony at the warehouse, located at 900 Pennsylvania Ave. in San Francisco.

Mitsubishi Electric is providing 320 of its 180Wp panels, which will be installed by Sun Light & Power in conjunction with PG&E. The finished system can generate 57.6 kilowatts DC of clean energy, and aims to reduce the Food BankÂ’s operating costs and reduce demand on the regionÂ’s energy grid.

“We are delighted to be selected as the PV manufacturer for the Food Bank project,” says Gina Heng, Director of Sales and Marketing for Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA’s Photovoltaic Division. “With energy costs skyrocketing, non-profit organizations are really feeling the pinch. Along with Sun Light & Power, we were able to develop a package that will provide immediate savings to the Food Bank.”

Mitsubishi ElectricÂ’s high-strength, corrosion-resistant modules contain no lead solder, a technology Mitsubishi Electric introduced to the US in 2005. Instead of lead-solder coating for the cells, Mitsubishi Electric developed silver electrodes that offer superior weatherproofing and higher PV module conversion efficiency.

“We’re pleased to be working with Mitsubishi Electric and the San Francisco Food Bank on this very worthwhile project; an organization that helps feed 150,000 people a year in the city,” says Gary Gerber, Founder and President of Sun Light & Power in Berkeley, CA.


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