Solar for Rooftop Farms

The Brooklyn Grange farms on rooftops all over New York City to promote sustainable living. We worked with them to bring solar to their rooftop office in the Navy Yard, powering drills, laptops and phones.

solar rooftop farm, brooklyn grange

The Brooklyn farm houses about 2.5 acres of farming, along with several bee hives, and also some spectacular views of the Manhattan skyline. We began talking about the idea of augmenting the power supply for the rooftop office over the summer and decided to give it a try as a test for some other potential projects down the line.

solar rooftop farm, brooklyn grange

Solar Rooftop Farm Installation

The system we installed on the container office consists of 6 x Voltaic System 17W solar panels connected in parallel. The panels are attached to a custom made 6061 Aluminum bracket, which we fabricated in-house at our New Lab based main office.

solar rooftop farm, brooklyn grange, new lab

The New Lab building in the Brooklyn Navy Yard is an office space most can only dream of. In the building we have full in house fabrication capabilities. New Lab features 3D rapid printing of any media type and many other prototyping capabilities to allow members the ability to design and create the next iteration anything they want, without leaving the building.

brooklyn navy yard, new lab

Needless to say, we are a little spoiled now. The brackets we decided on using are set at an angle of 60 degrees, relative to the horizon, since this is the average angle of the sun for Brooklyn, New York and we wanted to have a fixed bracket and not a variable angle bracket for this installation.

solar rooftop farm, brooklyn grange

The panels are pointing due south and have full exposure to the sun without shading issues. The panels can supply about 107 watts of power along with up to 6 amps of current when operating under ideal conditions. The system is connected to a Lithium Polymer battery supply with approximately 400 W/h of capacity. This solar rooftop farm setup allows the Brooklyn Grange crew to be able to charge various devices, whether from the inverter on 110VAC, directly from 12VDC or the USB outlets.

solar rooftop farm, brooklyn grange

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