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Case Study

Langage Business Park

  • Solar PV
  • Combined annual saving and FiT earnings on electricity bills £3,235.00
  • ROI 17.19%
  • Total over 20 years £64,700.00

The Client

The Phase 2 expansion of Plymouth City Council’s Langage Business Park is a hi-tech, hi-spec commercial workspace designed to offer a range of unit sizes between 2,000sq ft and 30,000sq ft. The nine-unit Phase One was completed in 2015 and the entire 30,000sq ft high block was quickly snapped up by expanding upmarket food producer Dartmouth Foods Ltd.

Ryearch, a Devon-based construction company, was the main contractor to build the Phase 2 development, with the brief to develop high-quality buildings incorporating many modern build techniques and sustainable features, providing a superb working environment. The project was completed in Spring 2018.

The Langage Business Park phases are part of a city council investment portfolio worth more than £130 million.

The Challenge

MEP Systems Ltd were awarded the contract for the M&E (mechanical and electrical) element of the Phase 2 new build development. As part of this package there was a requirement for the supply, installation and commissioning of Solar PV arrays onto each of the 6 planned units. IU Energy were awarded this element of the project as the specialists in the renewables marketplace.

This was a relatively large project and had to be synchronised across all six structures with the main developers and the primary M&E subcontractor. An additional consideration was the secure mounting onto the roof sheet to provide resistance to wind loadings.

The Solution

IU Energy used the detailed plans provided to produce a proposal for the supply, installation and commission of 1 x 5kW, 4 x 6kW and 1 x 7kW Solar PV systems onto the roofs of the new build units. Each industrial unit required its own Solar PV system, inverters and connection to the low voltage network because each unit had to be monitored individually. Each PV system was provided to enhance and assist the achievement of an ‘A’ rated EPC for all units.

All components of the Solar PV arrays were selected to ensure they met all the requirements as per the provided specifications, including minimum warranty periods.

The Solar PV system was also designed to ensure internet connectivity for remote monitoring via either Wi-Fi or a dedicated data logger.

The mounting system used was designed to clamp straight onto the roof to provide resistance to wind loadings, as per the manufacturer’s specification and design.

The Results

The installation was completed on time by working with the various contractors on site and ensuring effective communication with all stakeholders. This was a textbook exercise in project management, which was a critical element in ensuring that the budget quoted was adhered to.

On completion, immediate benefit was seen and the following returns were calculated.

1 x 5.13kW, 4 x 6.21kW and 1 x 7.02kW Arrays combined

  • Yr 1 earnings from FIT (£) £754.74
  • Estimated annual savings on electricity bill £1,997.27
  • Annual earnings on export tariff £482.99
  • Annual benefit for Client £3,235.00
  • Lifetime benefit for Client (20 years) £64,700.00

The overall figure represents an ROI of 17.19% The projected payback is representative of the first year only and does not take into consideration any increase in energy costs or the increase of the FiT due to the tariff being index linked to RPI. This will potentially result in the ROI being better than initially predicted in these calculations.

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