Southern Ocean Lodge Case Study

Case Study CS00174 - Southern Ocean Lodge - Commercial Off-Grid

Background

Kangaroo Island is a 155km long island of pristine wilderness located just off the coast of South Australia. Within Kangaroo Island’s diverse ecosystem there are untouched wetlands and 2,250 km² of native ‘old growth’ vegetation, along with white sand beaches and soaring cliff faces. To help protect this unique area, Baillie Lodges has built a luxury lodge at the forefront of sustainable tourism.

Nestled within Kangaroo Island’s southern coastline, Southern Ocean Lodge was opened in March 2008 by James and Hayley Baillie of Baillie Lodges. 102 hectares of the southern coast was purchased for the development, however only 1% of the land was ever developed, with the other 99% placed under a Heritage Agreement to protect it from any future development, ensuring the longevity of the fragile ecosystem.

The area in which Southern Ocean Lodge is located is so remote that there is no grid connected electricity available. With James and Hayley’s respect for the environment, it was no wonder that they did not want to rely solely on diesel based generators to supply their lodge with electricity. The solution was to install a 38.5kW off grid solar power system. The off grid system consists of 225 solar panels connected through inverters into the lodge’s electrical system. 36 of the solar panels were installed on trackers to create an aesthetically pleasing feature, directly in front of the main lodge and guest suites. The remaining panels were installed on the main lodge roof to optimise energy collection.

James Baillie, owner of Baillie Lodges said, “We invested in solar to enhance the sustainability of our world class luxury lodge. Due to our location, we had no option but to use diesel generation, however, to be able to offset such a significant part of our load is amazing.”

Project Details

Location: Kangaroo Island,SA

Project Participants: Baillie Lodges (Customer), BP Solar Pty Ltd (Manufacturer) and MPower (Supplier & Installer)

Project Completion: September 2009

Project Value: Approximately $430,000

System Features

  • Size: 38.25kWp
  • Area: 288m²
  • Estimated electricity generated: 51,500kWh per year
  • CO² reduction: A saving of 51.5 tonnes per year
  • System Components:
    • 225 x BP 170W panels
    • 6 x SMC6000A Inverters
    • 3 x SB2500E inverters
    • SMA WebBox
    • 6 x Single axis trackers

 

Challenges

Not only did the system have to be delivered to a remote island, but the installation had to occur while the lodge was in full operation. Southern Ocean Lodge is an exclusive retreat, making it essential that there were minimum disruptions to guests.

 

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