In order to become energy self-sufficient, Kanaka is taking steps to produce renewable and reliable electricity for the community.
How does solar power work? In its simplest form, solar cells produce electrons when particles of light (photons) pass through and knock electrons loose from free atoms that make up the cell, generating a flow of electricity.
What's a solar array? Solar panels are often refered to as photovoltaic (PV) modules, which is an assembly of many solar cells. A solar array is a system of one or more solar panels linked together.
There are now 7 operational solar projects at Kanaka Bar, the first of which was installed in May of 2016 with two new expansions added in July of 2019. In 2016, three solar projects were installed; one to power the band office, another to power the health office, and the third to power the security system. In 2018 a fourth project was installed to power the maintenance shed. Details of each of these will be added to the reports tab of this section and daily energy production from the 8 kW array powering the band office can be viewed here and the 6 kW powering the health building can be viewed here.
In addition to the four solar arrays, there are three weather stations at Kanaka that are powered by a solar panel each, and the street lamps on Highway 1 are powered by another solar array as well as wind.
In working towards self-sufficiency, we at Kanaka are setting up our own wind turbine to produce power to compliment solar power.
How does wind power work? When a wind turbine spins, the kinetic energy from the movement is converted to electricity through the connected generator.
There are two types of turbines we are looking at
HAWT (Horizontal Axis Wind Turbine) VAWT (Verticle Axis Wind Turbine)
Kanaka has two operating verticle axis wind turbines down on highway 1. They each have a 400 watt capacity and are in an integrated system with solar powering the street lights at the rest stop.
Kanaka Bar is the proud owner of a run of river hydro project on the Kwoiek in partnership with Innergex Renewable Energy Inc. Information on this project can be found here and in the reports tab of this section soon.
Kanaka is looking for more small scale hydro elecric project opportunities in the surrounding watershed to supply year-round energy security.