|56 kW Solar array|
|Across field viewing shade structures|
|The movers and shakers getting iCeL tour|
(Photo credit: City of Anaheim)
Unfortunately, the iCeL system was never implemented and the firm itself had an involuntary petition for liquidation under Chapter 7 of the Bankruptcy Code filed against it in May of 2010. As it happens, Chaz Haba, iCel's founder and CEO has what could be described as a colorful history as an energy and electronics entrepreneur.
In any event, I wondered if the solar panels were operational. I sent an inquiry on the "Anaheim Anytime" web site and received a phone call the same day from Dina Predisik of Anaheim Public Utilities. Ms. Predisik was very open (though she couldn't speak on the iCeL matter) and assured me that the panels have been generating electricity since 2009.
The panels on the sun shades are rated at 20 kilowatts, and those in the field at ground level are rated at 56 kilowatts. They are expected to deliver 114,000 kilowatt hours/year, thus the "capacity factor" is 18%, not bad at all. Looked at another way, this is the power available from about a 22 kilowatt (NOT megawatt or gigawatt) generating station operating at 60% capacity factor (fairly typical for fossil fuel generating stations). Clearly, they are not massive energy providers. Without a doubt though, they're a good example of "distributed generation."
While I'm proud of my city for installation of what is clearly a positive development with respect to turning a vacant and overgrown field into an environmentally friendly recreation area, the cautionary tale here is that where non-expert governmental officials become enamored with cutting edge and ostensibly "green" technologies, the opportunity for malfeasance is great.