Energy News

Renewable Energy

As a part of our alternative energy initiative, Energy  Management recently purchased and installed solar panels for the electric  powered golf carts. The heart of the cart upgrade was the 187 watt high power photovoltaic panel. The panel comes  with an integrated visor which includes a charge indicator driven by a charge  controller. The solar panel converts sunlight directly to electricity which  either charges the battery or goes straight to the motor during operation. The  charge controller monitors and optimizes the charging process.


The solar charging panel  is always on and available for charging, and provides a charge even on overcast  days. Faster charging occurs during full sun periods, but with intermittent  use, the panel keeps up with demand even during shady days. Every bit of solar  electricity reduces our recharging expenses.



EMS-1 and EMS-2 Golf Carts

Technical  Specifications

Model:       SG-187
Rated Maximum Power (Pmax):   187 Watts
Current at Pmax (Imp):                7.25A
Voltage at Pmax (Vmp):               25.8V**
Short-Circuit Current (Isc):         7.99A
Open Circuit Voltage (Voc):        32.7V
Nominal Operating Cell Temp:    -40  to 194 deg. F
Cell Technology:         Poly-crystalline  silicone
Overall Dimensions:                   58.7″  L x 39.1″ W x 2.3″ D with 4″ W visors
Solar Panel Weight:                      39.6  lbs
Solar Panel with Roof Frame Weight: 42 lbs

The use of this kit can eliminate up to 350 pounds of coal  per year, by eliminating the need of only electricity to charge your batteries.  It would also eliminate the emission of 1,100 lbs. of CO2 PER YEAR into the  atmosphere (based on using the cart to its maximum potential of 5 sun-hours of peak  sun).  The golf cart solar panel charging kit is designed by researchers from  the University of Florida and is manufactured in the USA.

2  Cart conversions = 2,200 lbs of CO2 eliminated and up to 700lbs of coal.

Insultech Banket InstallationInsultech Blanket Installation


Reducing Energy Costs

During review  of our energy use and utility billing it was determined that cost savings could be generated if we separately metered irrigation water from building water.  Doing so eliminated the sewer costs for the water used for irrigation. Implementing this change saved $17,000 per year.

Utilizing our energy  Curtailment Program through Energy Connect we have recovered $202,000 to date.  The  Curtailment Program allows Mason to make a profit by curtailing energy use during a grid emergency.  That energy is then sold at a higher price and the profit is returned to Mason.

Installed meters to track  utility costs for construction projects. This allowed us to appropriately allocate  construction costs to the correct project.

Changed the electric rate  schedule for Arlington Original from 5VA to 6VA saving approximately $34,000.

Developed a natural gas contract to purchase gas at a lower rate.

Reducing Energy Consumption

Reducing energy  consumption by utilizing automated Peak Demand Limiting. This process allows us  to stay within our electric utility provider demand limit, thus saving us  overage charges.

Reducing energy  consumption by interlocking exhaust fans with the air handler units that supply  air to the areas the exhaust fans serve. Air handler units are started using  occupancy modes and interlocking the exhaust fans with their respective air  handlers will save energy by not running the exhaust fans when the air handlers  are off.