A massive solar sound barrier in the US state of Massachusetts is expected to generate 802,000 kWh of electricity annually, equivalent to powering 120 homes annually.

From pv magazine United States

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is launching a freeway solar noise barrier project, which it says is the first of its kind in the Western Hemisphere.

In 2015, Ko-Solar and its partners contacted MassDOT to discuss the concept of photovoltaic noise barriers (PVNB). MassDOT has accepted the PVNB pilot project along Interstate 95 in Lexington, Massachusetts. The existing noise barrier will be transformed into a PVNB, which will be built and financed in partnership with Solect Energya Massachusetts-based solar energy provider.

For project procurement and contracting, MassDOT will use its membership in Power options, a New England energy purchasing consortium. Solect Energy will finance, install, monitor and maintain the project.

MassDOT plans to use the results of the pilot project, including information on noise impacts, maintenance, costs and community perceptions, to determine the feasibility of PVNB applications elsewhere in the Commonwealth.

The PVNB will be on the north side of the highway and will span 3,000 feet. It will be 20 feet high and made of reinforced concrete. The capacity of the retrofit PV system is expected to be 637.5 kW (DC), with an estimated annual output of 802,000 kWh, equivalent to powering 120 homes per year.

In partnership with Ko-Solar and its partners, MassDOT solicited feedback on the project from butters and other Lexington residents through letters to those who live near the project site, a public meeting, and meetings with other stakeholders, as 100% support was needed to move. cheeky. All votes were in favor of the pilot project.

One of the results of the public consultation process was to require noise level monitoring to be part of the pilot program. Office noise modeling suggests there may be a slight improvement or even reduction in noise levels for the foothills.

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