Wind Turbine and Solar Panels
The 12 foot diameter, 3.5 kW turbine was installed in 2016 with the creation of the eGarden. It provides power to the blue circuit and connected battery bank in the eGarden.
As of 2023, a student designed system has been installed to protect and slow down the wind turbine at high wind speeds. After trial and error, this system was constructed as a normally closed circuit. The relay activates a magnetic lock brake when the turbine hits a threshold speed. With the addition of this relay, the wind turbine can be used for long periods of time without constant monitoring as the automated system protects the turbine and allows energy production 24/7.
The eGarden contains two tracking solar arrays on its southern side. The "tracking" feature means that they can track the sun as it moves across the sky from east to west throughout the day. This technology allows the panels to optimize the amount of sun they collect.
These are referred to as the "east" and "west" solar arrays and they are each attached to a different circuit and a different set of batteries in the eGarden, they each produce 1.2 kW of power. The west array powers the green battery bank and the east array powers the yellow bank.
As of 2023, the east and west solar array angles were adjusted to receive optimal solar rays directed from the sun. Additionally, the straps that tie from the panels to the pole attached to the ground were removed and replaced with new yellow and green straps to match the east and west arrays accordingly.