Lime Energy Co. (Lime Energy) and REC Solar, Inc. (REC Solar), together with IDEC Corporation (IDEC) have announced the completion of a 162 kilowatt (kW) DC solar electric system and new efficient warehouse lighting system. The combined savings from the efficient lighting plus the output of the 162 kW REC Solar electric system are expected to reduce IDEC’s electricity consumption from the local utility by about 25%.

This solar installation is the part of IDEC’s mission to green its US corporate headquarters in Sunnyvale, California.

“Between the efficiency and the solar, IDEC is really providing leadership in sustainability,” said Dan Parke, president and chief operating officer of Lime Energy. “IDEC really understands their electricity needs and how to make use of technology both in their electricity supply choices and their electricity-using equipment to come up with the best combination.”

“By combining energy efficiency with solar power, IDEC has taken a significant step in controlling their energy costs. Not only will they be able to reduce their energy expenses, but they will also enjoy a healthy return on investment, with significant benefits in the future as these systems have a life expectancy of more than 25 years, said Angiolo Laviziano, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of REC Solar.

Savings in utility electricity costs should be closer to 35%, however, because most of the energy provided by the solar panels is produced during summer afternoons when electricity rates are highest.

“The lighting retrofit from Lime Energy involved replacing 400 watt metal halide lights in the warehouse to high-output fluorescent fixtures with motion sensors. “Metal halides start to deteriorate as soon as you first turn them on,” according to Lanny Schuberg, product engineering and technical coordination manager at IDEC: “The new system gives us better lights and improved safety. Also, the existing lights needed to be moved into a better position over the aisles. Lime Energy did all of their work when we were closed at night and now everything is in the right place without disrupting our business.”

“People are much happier with the light levels; I have received many positive comments”, said Debbie Kranz, administration manager at IDEC. “I thought that some people might object to the sensors, but there have been no complaints. When someone starts to go down an aisle, the sensors detect that and the lights come on. It is great to see lights off when they are not needed and realize we are saving energy and reducing CO2 emissions.”

“For several decades IDEC has worked to develop industrial control devices ranging from relays and switches to sensors and programmable controllers which have helped manufacturing and factory automation industries. Since 1981, IDEC has provided LED indicator lamps for factory environments,” said Toshi Funaki, CEO of IDEC. “IDEC prides itself as a technology innovator, constantly looking one step ahead to ensure safety, reduce energy consumption, and protect the environment. Its efforts go beyond product development. IDEC opened a new office building in Osaka, Japan, in March of this year, which is believed to be the first building in the world to be illuminated entirely by LED lighting. This bold project resulted in the reduction of polluting emissions by more than 40% in comparison with typical fluorescent lighting. So it was natural for IDEC to turn to renewable energy in its U.S. headquarters by installing highly efficient roof top solar panels and replacing warehouse lighting with a new energy efficient system.”