Burder Industries – Award Winning 355kW system

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Burder sees business case for solar power.

Managing energy expenditure is an increasing commercial imperative. The most successful businesses understand that a reduction in energy consumption simply makes good business sense.

Burder Industries is one such company. As a regional manufacturer of tractor and earthmoving equipment for the agricultural industry, Burder Industries saw a clear business case for investing in solar power. Significant electricity usage at its Wangaratta facility, coupled with growing competition from lower-cost imports, created a need to reduce operating costs and increase efficiency.

Burder Industries engaged EnviroGroup to design and install a solar energy system to help meet its business needs. “Making wise investment decisions for our organisation is critical to our long-term success,” said Adam Fendyk, Burder Industries Group, General Manager. “We determined that a solar upgrade was not only well founded but strategic to our longevity.”

After thorough planning and analysis, EnviroGroup installed a 355kWp solar power system, comprising 1420 high quality Yingli Solar PV panels designed to fit Burder Industries’ available roof space.

The solar power system, along with a substation upgrade, will help Burder Industries generate up to 90 percent of its daily electricity needs and deliver excess power back to the grid all year round. The company will also reduce its carbon footprint by up to 607 tonnes annually, which is the equivalent of taking 145 cars off the road.

Burder Industries aims to reduce its electricity costs by more than 70 percent and its investment in solar PV is expected to generate an annual Internal Rate of Return (IRR) of more than 25 percent.

As a full-service provider of renewable energy products and systems, EnviroGroup managed all aspects of the project, including the system design, installation, high voltage connection design and upgrade, 500kVA substation sourcing and installation, grid connection and metering.

“EnviroGroup surpassed our expectations, completing a neat and professional installation within a short time frame without disrupting our business operations,” said Fendyk. “They also found creative solutions, including writing our company name ’BURDER’ across the roof of the building with the solar panels, which has helped to promote our commitment to sustainability.”

The completed project was submitted to the Clean Energy Councils for the 2015 Solar Design and Installation Awards. The project was the overall winner for the category of “Grid-Connect Solar PV Power System Design and Installation – Over 100 kilowatts” and recognised the hard work of our head installer, Mathew Wilson.

While the most striking feature of the installation is the spelling of the name ‘Burder’ across the company roof, the award also recognised several other unique and high quality aspects of project:

  1. Careful minimisation of impact to normal operations: The continuously operating business could not afford to stop, so  installation was carried out during work hours. This required careful planning and coordination to avoid not equipment and staff, but also to coordinate electrical shutdowns.
  2. Demonstrated zero roof leaks: With so many panels across multiple buildings, we had to prove that the installation wasn’t going to cause roof leaks. To date the site has had no leaks.
  3. Knowledge and expertise of additional requirements: Through our in-house engineering team, we identified the need for an additional transformer and reactor. These upgrades improved the sites overall electrical efficiency and would have been worthwhile regardless of whether or not the system was installed.
  4. Fully compliant OHS/WHS reporting: During the 26 day installation period and up to handover we had zero injuries, zero near misses, zero environmental incidents, zero quality issues.
  5. Completion of project within specified timelines: Installation and commissioning was completed within the 26 day timeline, no small feat for a project of this size.

We are very proud to be the recipient of the award, but we’re even prouder of the savings that the system will generate for Burder industries.

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