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Matt Kaiser

Six Flags Great Adventure Now Powered by Solar Energy

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A quick look at the Current Results website concerning weather facts, on average NJ has 94 clear days in a year, or sunny 56% of the time during daylight hours. In contrast, CA, TX, GA, MO, MD, and even MA are sunnier on average than NJ. IL is nearly a tie with NJ. Compare to CA with 146 clear days, TX with 135 clear days, or GA with 112 clear days. The state with the most clear days is AZ with 193 cleardays while VT and WA tie as the states with the least clear days at 58 clear days. 

Edited by The Master

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While sunshine is ideal, unobstructed  daylight is the key.  It’s like still being able to get a sunburn on a overcast summer day.  

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GADV is not going completely off the grid right? Some articles mentioned most of the park would be powered via solar

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12 hours ago, 29yrswithaGApass said:

While sunshine is ideal, unobstructed  daylight is the key.  It’s like still being able to get a sunburn on a overcast summer day.  

Exactly.  While their productivity may be cut as much as 90%, solar panels are still collecting energy even when it's raining. 

 

Also, temperature plays a part in it as well.  While AZ may get the most sunshine, it's heat reduces output of the panels by 10-25%.  

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6 hours ago, Lemur said:

Exactly.  While their productivity may be cut as much as 90%, solar panels are still collecting energy even when it's raining. 

 

Also, temperature plays a part in it as well.  While AZ may get the most sunshine, it's heat reduces output of the panels by 10-25%.  

 

Still sounds like AZ is more ideal for solar power as a 10-25% power loss is less than the 90% power loss in the rain. On average, NJ has 117 days with precipitation vs 36 days in AZ. But SF doesn't have parks in AZ, so comparing that is pointless. SoCal also has just 36 days of precipitation on average, while TX has 106 days and GA has 109 days. 

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3 minutes ago, The Master said:

 

 But SF doesn't have parks in AZ, so comparing that is pointless.

Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Phoenix

https://sixflags.com/phoenix

 

The key takeaway from the solar farm is that it is expected to save the park one million dollars a year.  That is money that can be spent in other areas of the park (paint, maintenance, new rides, etc.).

 

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On 6/14/2019 at 9:02 PM, Medusa42 said:

Six Flags Hurricane Harbor Phoenix

https://sixflags.com/phoenix

 

The key takeaway from the solar farm is that it is expected to save the park one million dollars a year.  That is money that can be spent in other areas of the park (paint, maintenance, new rides, etc.).

 

 

Didn't know about SF's aquisition of the Phoenix Wet N Wild, looking it up, its pretty recent.

 

Hopefully SF included upkeep of the solar farm itself into their NPV analysis. The woods produce a lot of debris and grime that falls onto roofs that must be cleared. Solar panels need cleaning as grime built up can reduce their output. Natural debris from the woods as well as general northeast manmade pollution produce a lot grime buildup that will require cleaning off of the panels. I would be surprised if the saved money is retained for reinvestment rather than paid out to shareholders. 

 

The one thing GADV does have for solar is space for a solar farm, even if the rainy climate is not the most ideal. 

Edited by The Master

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2 hours ago, The Master said:

 

Hopefully SF included upkeep of the solar farm itself into their NPV analysis. The woods produce a lot of debris and grime that falls onto roofs that must be cleared. Solar panels need cleaning as grime built up can reduce their output. Natural debris from the woods as well as general northeast manmade pollution produce a lot grime buildup that will require cleaning off of the panels. I would be surprised if the saved money is retained for reinvestment rather than paid out to shareholders. 

 

 

The panels are owned and operated by KDC Solar. Maintenance should be factored into whatever deal they have.

 

 

 

On 6/14/2019 at 11:11 AM, rcji said:

GADV is not going completely off the grid right? Some articles mentioned most of the park would be powered via solar

 

This is net-metered, meaning everything is still hooked up to the grid, and excess power generated by the panels goes back onto the grid. They essentially get paid / get credits from the power company when that happens. Some days they'll use more than they generate (SF owes money), and some days they'll generate more than they use (SF gets money). Over the course of a year, they say it should balance out so that the amount generated covers 98% of what they used.

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10 hours ago, Matt Kaiser said:

This is net-metered, meaning everything is still hooked up to the grid, and excess power generated by the panels goes back onto the grid. They essentially get paid / get credits from the power company when that happens. Some days they'll use more than they generate (SF owes money), and some days they'll generate more than they use (SF gets money). Over the course of a year, they say it should balance out so that the amount generated covers 98% of what they used.

 

So Six Flags will make money in the off season, guess it will make up for the inability for year round operations.

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2 hours ago, Pineracer said:

 

So Six Flags will make money in the off season, guess it will make up for the inability for year round operations.

 

That would be the biggest benefit to SF, if snowfall doesn't block the panels too much. Plus there are the Spring, Fall, and early Winter seasons when they are only open on weekends.

 

Also, if SF wants to save energy costs, they need to better manage their energy useage. I seen outdoor lighting there on in the middle of the day. 

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3 hours ago, The Master said:

 

 That would be the biggest benefit to SF, if snowfall doesn't block the panels too much. Plus there are the Spring, Fall, and early Winter seasons when they are only open on weekends.

  

Some solar panels are designed in which it is easier for snow to slide off of them should that be a problem. I don't know what kind of technology the panels SF uses does but it would have been smart for them to do that. Solar panels can actually be more efficient in colder weather and the sun  reflecting off snow on the ground would increase output too. I don't think they will have any problems generating more energy than they use in the winter. 

Edited by SFGadv123

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They won’t really make money in the off-season or if they produce more than what’s used on a given day.  Net-metered basically is like having a two way meter. When using more electric than is currently being produced the meter runs normally tracking usage to bill. When they produce more than what’s used the meter goes in the opposite direction basically building credit for future use.  Going this route saves a ton of money because they don’t have to have batteries to store all of that energy. The draw back is that the park goes down when electric is out on the grid because they aren’t self sufficient. 

 

Not sure if Jersey is the same as NY but that usage / credit gets reset once a year and any extra produced over usage would get paid out but you really don’t want to be over because you only get a credit for production cost not what you’d see on your bill.  So you want your anniversary date to be set so you don’t reset in prime months wasting what the banked in credit.  

 

Your anniversary is when ever you first turn it on but after the first year you can change it once. So as an example mine now resets for March 1st. That way I build up credit Spring - Fall when you generate the most and when you hit winter you have credit to draw from when you are using more than you can produce. By staying just under 100% they should never have wasted production and will only pay out 2% of what they used to have to. Very smart move. 

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5 hours ago, Sluggo77 said:

The draw back is that the park goes down when electric is out on the grid because they aren’t self sufficient. 

 

They had a power outage today. lol

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On 6/14/2019 at 8:52 PM, The Master said:

 

Still sounds like AZ is more ideal for solar power as a 10-25% power loss is less than the 90% power loss in the rain. On average, NJ has 117 days with precipitation vs 36 days in AZ. But SF doesn't have parks in AZ, so comparing that is pointless. SoCal also has just 36 days of precipitation on average, while TX has 106 days and GA has 109 days. 

AZ is too hot.  One report I'd read said that San Francisco had better productivity than Phoenix due to the panels being too hot. 

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22 hours ago, Lemur said:

AZ is too hot.  One report I'd read said that San Francisco had better productivity than Phoenix due to the panels being too hot. 

But San Francisco still has 259 sunny days and just 72 days of precipitation in a year. At the same time, NJ gets much hotter in the Summer on the few sunny days we do get, and even on cloudy days too. 

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According to Modern Marvels in a 2005 episode

 

It doesn’t have to be the sunniest. One in Germany gets less sun than Seattle

 

 

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No offense but arguing that it's too cloudy in NJ for solar panels is pretty stupid. As people have pointed out, solar panels still produce energy when it is cloudy, just at a lower output. Are there places more optimal? Of course, but it isn't a bad place for them by any means. No matter how you try to portray it it is good that they now get most of their energy from clean, renewable energy rather than fossil fuels. 

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