Automation technology group, ABB has officially signed a contract with Queensland Health to design, supply and install a 266 kilowatt roof-mounted solar panel system at the Hervey Bay Hospital located on the Fraser Coast in Queensland.

The system will generate around 385 megawatt-hours of renewable energy each year, saving an estimated $20,000 on electricity costs and reduce carbon emissions by approximately 400 tonnes annually.

The contact was awarded in January 2012, with the $1.3 million project expected to be complete in mid 2012.

ABB’s involvement includes the design and installation of a complete photovoltaic (PV) system that will maximise the amount of electricity generated. The solar system will be interfaced into the hospital’s existing building management system for control and monitoring purposes, and include an interactive web-kiosk and large screen television in the foyer to display performance data as an education tool for visitors.

Hon. Stephen Roberston, Queensland Minister for Energy, said the hospital was one of the biggest users of electricity on the Fraser Coast.

“The environmental savings from this initiative forms an important step in our target of creating a greener, clean energy future for Queenslanders,” said Mr Robertson.

Jason Venning, ABB’s power generation manager in Australia said, “When complete, this will become the largest rooftop PV system at any hospital in Queensland and will mark a significant milestone for ABB in Australia. The hospital has already reduced its energy consumption significantly by implementing a number of energy efficiency initiatives, and with the addition of the renewable energy from this system, they will become more self sufficient.”

ABB will supply solar panels manufactured in Australia by Silex Solar. The system includes electrical meters, low voltage DC isolation equipment and inverter technology. The PVS-300 string inverters will convert the direct current generated by the solar panels into alternating current, making it available for direct use by the hospital’s electrical system.