A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for a baccalaureate degree in Mechanical Engineering with honors in Engineering Design

Reviewed and approved* by the following: Andrew S. Lau Associate Professor of Engineering Thesis Supervisor Thomas H. Colledge Assistant Professor of Engineering Design Thesis Supervisor Richard F. Devon Professor of Engineering Design Honors Adviser

*Signatures are on file in the Schreyer Honors College.

We approve the thesis of Eric Michael Sauder:

Date of Signature _______________________________ Andrew S. Lau Associate Professor of Engineering Thesis Supervisor ______________

_______________________________ Thomas H. Colledge Assistant Professor of Engineering Design Thesis Supervisor


_______________________________ Richard F. Devon Professor of Engineering Design Honors Adviser



Mustard Seed Communities (MSC) is a faith based non-profit organization working in

Jamaica to provide care for mentally and physically disabled youth. MSC began a partnership with Penn State to develop sustainable technologies for Jacob’s Ladder a new care facility for 500 residents. Until the donation of two golf carts, the Jacob’s Ladder operators were having problems getting caretakers to travel the final mile into the site every morning. The path is dangerous, and taxi drivers charge exorbitantly. Jacob’s Ladder operators identified the charging of these electric vehicles as a significant need for the development of the site. A solar and wind hybrid charging station was designed to take advantage of seasonal

wind and sun. According to the predicted vehicle usage data, estimations of vehicle and charger efficiencies, the charger is required to generate two kilowatt hours daily. The charge demand will be met with a wind turbine rated for 400 W, and a 260 W solar array. The charge storage is designed to allow the vehicles to be in operation during the day, and onboard vehicle batteries during the night. To increase the versatility of the charging station, the direct current is inverted to 110 V alternating current receptacles. The charing station will be constructed on the roof of the site library, built by Penn State

University in Fall 2008. The solar panels will help to shade the roof of the library, cooling the structure. To promote the continued sustainability of the charger, the station will be installed by Students from the University of Technology (UTech) in Jamaica, providing a local knowledge bank capable of maintaining the energy system. After successful installation, MSC will host a one day alternative energy conference. University students from Penn State and UTech, local businesses, and curious neighbors will join to reassemble portions of the charger, and share knowledge about alternative energy technologies.

Alternative Energy Systems, Solar, Wind, Hybrid Power System, Renewable Energy, Sustainability, Jacob’s Ladder, Mustard Seed Communities, Jamaica, Charge Controller, Inverter, Lead-Acid Batteries, Solar Panels Wind Turbine, Sustainable Community, Appropriate Technology, Shipping Container

1 Problem Statement 2.3 Option 2: DC With Storage 5.2. Concept Development 5.2 Charge Storage Research 12 5.1 Customer Input 3.7 System Sizing 8 8 8 8 9 9 10 10 11 4.1. Preliminary Research 4.1.Table of Contents 2.5 Preliminary Community Assessment of Jacobʼs Ladder 1 1 1 2 2 3 4 2.3 Bauxite Mining: A Local Problem 2.1 Science of Solar Photovoltaic Cells 4.2.4 Future Goals For Jacobʼs Ladder 2.3 Project Planning 4 4 5 5 3.1.1 Solar Photovoltaic System Sizing Research 4.2 Option 1: DC to AC 5.1 Mustard Seed Communities 2.3 Preliminary Design Concepts and Ideation 5.3 Solar Insolation 4.1.6 System Components On-Grid and Off-Grid Systems 4.4.5 Charge Storage Concept Selection i 17 .1.2 Types of Solar Modules 4.2 Determination of Design Specifications 6 6 8 4. Introduction Option 3: Onboard Storage 12 12 14 14 15 15 15 16 16 5.1.2 Problem Decomposition 5.1 Existing Product Search 5.1.2 Project Definitions 2.1 Description of Concepts 5.4 Charge Storage Design Concepts 5.2 Project Goals 2.1 Project Background Information 2.4. Project Needs and Specifications Array Orientation 4.1. Jacobʼs Ladder 2.4.

1.4 Mustard Seed Wind Development Plans 6.3 Demonstration Village 23 23 24 25 Solar Array 7.2.4 Battery Bank 7.1 Meeting the Power Needs with Photovoltaics 6.5.2 Solar Integrated Green Roof 7.2 Mounted on Proposed Library 6.2 Station Design: Processing Electronics 7.2.5 Inverter 33 33 33 34 35 36 ii .3.1 DC Breaker Box 7.1.3 Available Energy: Local Solar Insolation 6.5 Wind Availability at Jacobʼs Ladder 21 21 22 22 23 23 6.1 Vehicle Usage Solar Array Mounting Configuration Wind Turbine Placement 27 28 28 28 29 31 31 Charge Controller 7.3.4 Wind Turbine 7.1 Option 1: Site Entrance 6.1.6 Station Configuration Selection 27 Detailed Design 7.3.5 System Load Sizing Calculations 18 18 18 19 20 20 21 6.4 Station Location Selection 6.2.2 Estimated Vehicle Efficiency 6.1 System Sizing 6.4 Anticipated System Efficiencies 6.1 Station Design: The Charge Sources Mounted on Existing Building 6.3 Station Location Concepts: Finding the Optimum Placement 6.3 Advantages and Disadvantages of Hybrid Power Systems 6.2 Wire Sizing Calculations 7.2 Available Wind Energy Production Resources Station Configuration Concepts: A Functional Design 6.2.1. System Level Design 6.2 Chapel 6.2 Available Charge Sources 6.3 Ground Mount 25 26 26 26 27 6.

2 Murphyʼs Law Improvements: A Marketable Design Where are the Solar Components? 41 41 41 41 42 8.3 Identification of Electrical Vehicle Specifications 44 44 45 46 Conclusions 9.1 Theory of Appropriate Technology 8.5 Project Budget and Cost Analysis 41 Implementation: Jamaica Design-Build 8.2 An Analysis of the Project Costs 9. Acknowledgments Appendix 51 1 iii .1 Weather 8.3 Revised Plans Golf Cart Charger 38 38 38 7.1 Charging Unit Placement 7.7.1 Experiences and Lessons Learned 9.1 A Justification for Alternatives: The Cost of Power Solar Charging Station Rack Mount 38 38 39 40 7.4.3 The Redesign 46 46 46 46 47 48 Personal Impact of Development Work 50 50 10.4 Results of Design-Build Week 8.User Interface 7.4 Future Alternative Energy Conference 42 42 43 43 44 8.4.1 Overview of Design Build Week 8.2 Electrical Component Arrangement 7.3 Developing Local Connections 8.2 Completed Library Interior Feasibility of Implementing Design in Developing Nations 9.2.4 Station Overall System Design 7.4.3 Station Design: The Charger .2 Installation and Instruction Manual 8.1 Benefits of an AC Receptacle 7.1 Placement and Finishing of Container Library 8.

1 Mustard Seed Communities Mustard Seed Communities (MSC) is a faithbased non-profit organization working in central Jamaica to care for mentally and physically disabled young adults. present them with opportunities to develop skills.2 The goals of MSC are to provide exceptional care for disabled individuals. MSC raised chickens to provide a source of protein for the residents. These technologies are able to reduce the financial strain on operation costs by replacing previously outsourced tasks with local products.1 Project Background Information 2. striving to build a community of caring. Figure 1: MSC LogoA To build this funding base. and training.4 Figure 2: Jerusalem! resident participating in MSC sustainable agricultural development -1- . At the My Father’s House site in Kingston. and to decrease the operation costs of their sites. Introduction 2. MSC attempts to use sustainable technologies in their communities.1.2 At the Jerusalem! site in Spanish Town. MSC is cultivating sustainable agriculture programs to feed the residents.2. sharing. they do not continue care for individuals after reaching the age of 18. and used the manure to provide energy for cooking. MSC operates seven sites on the island.3 Funding for MSC comes primarily from donors and supporting congregations abroad. and to live in an encouraging community setting.1 Although care facilities for the disabled exist in Jamaica.

3 Bauxite Mining: A Local Problem MSC hopes to develop technologies on the one-hundred acre Jacob’s Ladder site that can be replicated for surrounding poor Jamaicans. Figure 3: Homes at Jacob’s Ladder 2. the primary aluminum ore. For many. the site remains pocketed with deep depressions. Jacob's Ladder. This mountainous area contains the largest deposits of bauxite on the island.2.2 -2- .1. 5 Jacob’s Ladder will require more planning. The new site will be the largest care community operated by MSC when fully developed. Jacob’s Ladder once had large deposits of Bauxite. however.2 Jamaican legislation specifies a maximum slope for mined bauxite pit walls and requires the land to be returned to a grazing pasture. limited energy resources. and scarce water supplies.1. and as many as onehundred caretakers and staff will work at the site daily. are very real and practical problems for many Jamaicans. Although mining operations terminated at the site in the 1970’s. these lands are often lack fertility. and approximately ten miles South of Ocho Rios.6 Jacob’s Ladder is located in a remote area of the Blue Mountains of Central Jamaica. and conscious design than MSC has needed on previous projects.2. Jacob’s Ladder Mustard Seed approached Penn State in the Fall of 2007 to design and implement sustainable technologies at the newest MSC site. Five-hundred residents will live in one-hundred cottages. and is also home to many of the nation’s poorest people. As a result. the reclaimed mines are the only affordable lands for their farms and homes. just north of Moneague. Like many areas in Jamaica. the problems existing at Jacob’s Ladder: poor soil for crops.

Penn State is hoping to develop solutions that promote sustainability and increase the quality of life for the residents and workers at the Jacob’s Ladder site.Developmental Concept PlanC -3- .1.Jacob’s Ladder Figure 4: Location of Jacob’s Ladder SiteB 2. and staff. Through conversations with Mustard Seed planners.2 Figure 5: Jacob’s Ladder Site .4 Future Goals For Jacob’s Ladder As a service to their community. site operators. MSC hopes to make the Jacob’s Ladder site a facility where local community members can learn about the sustainable technologies that helped relieve these problems.

1.7 Figure 6: Students Conducting Site Assessment 2. Power has been provided. however. but are forced to because no transportation is available.2. but the service is not regular.2 Project Definitions 2. To do this. Staff workers can afford the taxi fares from the nearby towns to mine entrance. After conducting a community survey and customer needs analysis at the Jacob’s Ladder. Inclement weather can also make the long walk a miserable experience for the staff. -4- . Site operators expressed the need for a reliable means to charge the electric transport vehicles at Jacob’s Ladder. as people have been robbed and mugged there in the past. The design must allow for the carts to be operated for transportation throughout the day.5 Preliminary Community Assessment of Jacob’s Ladder Penn State students traveled to Jacob’s Ladder on two community assessment trips in the Spring of 2008. where all workers are needed to take care of the residents. MSC must make every effort to assist their workers in coming to work. At a care facility. it was determined that the energy demands of transportation was a significant problem facing further development of the site. Access is provided by a one mile long. dirt haul road used during mining. MSC was finding that these factors would occasionally keep staff from coming to work. design an appropriate charging station to power existing electric golf carts. taxi drivers charge exorbitant amounts to travel the final mile into the site. MSC has purchased electric powered golf carts to shuttle workers from the entrance. Workers do not feel safe walking this road. pothole filled.2.1 Problem Statement To incorporate alternative energy and improve the transportation at the Mustard Seed Communities Jacob's Ladder site.

3 Project Planning Penn State engineers have been working with site operators and planners at MSC to determine the course of action for the University involvement with Jacob’s Ladder. To ensure that the needs of the customer are met. The project is defined and driven by the following three goals: Integrate sustainable technologies into the Jacob’s Ladder site.2 Project Goals I. a project planning diagram has been developed.2. Improve transportation systems for staff.2.2. Design a simple and appropriate charging station for site vehicles. This is a pilot project. and will be the first Penn State design-build project to be integrated with the Jacob’s Ladder site. 2. design specifications are developed according to their needs. Figure 7: Project Planning Diagram Showing Steps of Design Process -5- . III. II. and that an objective design and implementation are chosen.

These are listed below in the Risk Assessment Figure 8. it is important to assess the possible risks encountered throughout the duration of the work. Long-Range MSC Planners The Long-Range MSC Planners are geographically separated from the day to day operations at the Jacob’s Ladder site. When beginning a design-build project. they envision different operational paths. both long-range MSC planners. -6- . Figure 8: Risk Assessment Table 3.1 Customer Input The project will meet the needs of two primary customers. Although these two groups both have the same end goal of providing care for handicapped youth and young adults. with proper communication. from preliminary planning to final development. Complete customer needs information can be found in Appendix E. although an individual in this role does not immediately see the impact of his or her decisions on the site. International projects working with limited time and budget constraints face many challenges and risks. and MSC site operators. Project Needs and Specifications 3. these individuals are able to develop successful goals for site development.

based in New York. 2008 meeting. Matthew Moran Students from Penn State University began working with Mustard Seed Communities in the Fall of 2007. with hopes that Jacob’s Ladder would become a community showcase of sustainable and renewable technologies. MSC Site Operators Brother Anthony Brother Anthony is the site operator for the MSC Jacob’s Ladder. When questioned about Brother Anthony’s golf cart request During a March 13.7 Clyde Ramkissoon Clyde coordinates supplies. Through two visits.4 -7- . He contacted the University beginning a partnership to develop sustainable initiatives into the site. Brother Anthony communicated the need for improved transportation for staff workers to and from the site. Clyde informed the Penn State engineers that Jacob’s Ladder would be receiving a shipment of two electric powered golf carts to be used for transportation on and to the site. Matthew Moran is the United States project relations director for Mustard Seed. and manages many of the day to day needs for all of the Mustard Seed Jamaica sites.

Preliminary Research 4.1 Science of Solar Photovoltaic Cells Solar cells generate power by absorbing the energy of photons from the Sun. Though thin film panels lack the efficiency of the crystalline cells.2 Determination of Design Specifications The customer needs have been compiled into a Quality Function Deployment (QFD) Matrix.3. and it is the basis for solar power. which can then be used to develop the design concepts. striking the surface of the panels. alternative sources will be used to provide the energy required to charge the electric golf carts used on site. The total power produced by a solar module is limited by the total amount of solar energy. This tool is used to translate the customer needs into engineering specifications.2 Types of Solar Modules Three types of solar modules are commonly used to generate electricity. the thin film technique is becoming more common because the coating can be deposited cost effectively using similar techniques to an ink jet printer. 4. 4. The QFD matrix can be found in Appendix F.1 Solar Photovoltaic System Sizing Research To meet the sustainability design objectives expressed by the Mustard Seed planning staff. A polycrystalline cell is created by chemically treating thinly sliced silicon sheets. in the form of photons. and a measurable current is formed.8 4. When a photon strikes the surface of a solar cell. but are uniquely sliced from a single crystal of silicon.1.1. Monocrystalline cells are cut in the same manner. This process is known as the photoelectric effect. electrons are transferred through the cell.8 -8- .

5.10 Figure 10: Operable Solar WindowE -9- .8 For example.Figure 9: From Left to Right: Monocrystalline.1. if a region has a solar insolation of 4. some mounting structures are constructed to adjust angle throughout the year.8 It is important to remember that solar panels seldom operate at efficiencies better than 20%. the altitude of the Sun may vary greatly depending on the latitude of the installation site. PA (40° 48' N 77° 52' W) would be installed at approximately 41 degrees from horizontal. In the course of the year. the optimum annual altitude angle for a solar panel is the degrees latitude of the installation site.3 Solar Insolation Solar insolation can be thought of as the solar potential of a region. For example. and Thin Film CellsD 4.9 4.5 kWh in one day of operation. As a general rule. Polycrystalline. a solar array installed in State College. In order to maximize the power generation capabilities of a solar array.1. and is typically expressed as the ideal number of kilowatt hours per square meter per day. a solar panel (with 100% efficiency) could produce 4.4 Array Orientation The orientation of a solar array is important to maximize the total power output of the system.

Charge Storage Although the energy produced by a charge source can be used immediately by a load. and off-grid power systems.1. Systems must be carefully evaluated to determine if a charge storage device is necessary. and little maintenance. Charge Sources Solar panels and wind turbines are commonly used charge sources for alternative energy systems. a charge storage. Here. and a charge monitoring device. Off-grid systems are relatively simple. few systems are sized exactly to match the load. Grid-connected systems are used to replace a portion of the power provided by the energy companies. require no input fuel. This is an ideal schedule for an item such as fan. A charge storage is often utilized to build a reserve of power which can be used as needed. and typically utilize some form of charge storage.8 In many remote areas. -10- . 4. They only require a charge generation source.5 On-Grid and Off-Grid Systems Alternative energy systems fall into one of two categories: grid-connected. The fan would only operate during the brightest sun lit hours of the day. An example of a system not requiring a charge storage would be a solar powered attic fan.6 System Components A charge generation and storage system has several required components: a charge source. the cost of running an electric cable from the electric service can be insurmountable. Users installing grid-connected systems are typically attempting to cut their energy costs by reducing the quantity of power purchased from the power companies. Offgrid systems are able to deliver electricity to users far from power lines. These devices are relatively inexpensive. offgrid systems can be used to provide the required power. where the only necessary run time is during the heat of the day.4.1.

A common recommendation for the regular. Whenever possible. and preferably enough to carry the loads through a few days of poor electric generation potential. These devices. Different charge storage scenarios also require additional considerations to determine the total amount of charge storage demanded by the system. or cycling. called charge controllers. This means that the total charge storage potential of the battery is only half of the listed to avoid over discharge of the battery.1. the load should be reduced. 4.7 System Sizing The ideal off-grid solar power system is designed to store at least all of the charge produced on a sunny day. Load reductions can dramatically decrease the cost of alternative energy systems.Charge Monitoring If a charge storage device is utilized. a control system is usually required to monitor the charge state of the storage. often contain microprocessors that can determine what to do with the incoming charge: store it or dissipate the excess. “depth of discharge” of a battery is 50%. electrochemical batteries will last longer if not discharged completely. More sophisticated charge controllers offer monitoring options to determine total power production.8 -11- . All system sizing begins with a thorough analysis of the load. For example.

This allows ultracapacitors to discharge quickly and deeply without damage to the capacitor. Following are some of the best competing products: -12- . Commonly six cells are used to form a 12 VDC battery. metallic sponge lead (Pb) is used for the anode. and the electrolyte is a mixture of sulfuric acid (H2SO4) and water.12 F 5.1 V. Concept Development 5. Though ultracapacitors have many ideal operating characteristics.4. and reliability improved before their wide-spread usage in alternative energy systems.1 Existing Product Search Many electric vehicles are designed to meet some portion of their electrical demand with alternative power sources. Lead-acid batteries are the most common batteries used for storage in small-scale alternative energy systems. A single cell exhibits a nominal voltage of 2. These various designs can be used as benchmarks to rate the success of the golf cart charging system for Jacob’s Ladder. Of these. Lead dioxide (PbO2) is used for the cathode. These cells are then combined in series to sum voltages to the desired battery voltage.2 Charge Storage Research Several methods exist for storing the large amounts of charge needed to power a golf cart.8 Capacitors Ultracapacitors differ from batteries as they store charge between solid state materials. their cost and must be lowered. instead of through electrochemical reactions. Many of these systems utilize solar panels to generate the charge needed for powering the vehicles. the most feasible have been chosen and are described below. Batteries Batteries utilize electro chemical reactions to store energy.

1 kW charging station in Santa Monica. such as the 2. Some of these. The kit utilizes a 180 watt panel to supply a current of three amperes at 60 volts. several cities began incorporating solar charging stations for electric vehicles into the plans for new development areas.13 Santa Monica 2.5 The station is located near.00. A charge controller regulates the charging of the onboard cart batteries.700.1 kW Solar Electric Vehicle Charging Station Electric vehicles were first marketed in Arizona and California in the 1997 model year.4 Solar-Shell Electric Bike Charging Station The Solar-Shell is an enclosure that provides shelter and power for two electric bicycles. 6 -13- . Sunray Solar Roof Kit The Sunray Solar Roof Kit is sold through the Cruise Car golf cart company of Sarasota. Florida. and grid connected to. the Santa Monica City Hall building. and incorporate educational displays to demonstrate the power generated. Charge is converted from the DC battery storage back to AC with an inverter. The Shell uses solar panels to charge a 12 VDC battery bank.12 The company claims that the cart can travel 30% farther because power is constantly being supplied to the batteries. The unit retails for $2.4 To prepare for these new vehicles. The panel is integrated into a roof replacement kit which can be purchased for $1895. California utilized solar photovoltaic cells to provide the necessary power for the charging of seven electric vehicles. The photovoltaic panels provide a shaded parking stall for the electric vehicles they charge. allowing for any 110 VAC bike charger to be used inside the station.

2 Problem Decomposition A black box model is a simple tool used to determine the input and output parameters. Figure 12: Preliminary Charger Concept -14- . An important result of the black box model is determining the desired outputs. In the weeks after the community assessment site visit. The system outlined below will produce a charged vehicle. here from solar energy. ideas were generated.5. and allow for a means to monitor the charge state of the vehicle given an input of charge. and required inputs. and developmental concepts were produced to match the functions described in the black box model. The charging system shown in figure 12 was one of the first complete concepts for a stand-alone charging station. Figure 11: Black Box Model 5. these components must be present for the charging station to function.3 Preliminary Design Concepts and Ideation Ideation is the process of collecting rough ideas and gathering them into design concepts. Regardless of the specific design used for the charging station.

Some of the advantages and disadvantages of the concepts are also discussed to highlight the most important features of each design.AC Charge Storage Concept -15- .2 Option 1: DC to AC The direct current (DC) produced by the solar array would be stored in a battery bank to allow charging to take place at night. Figure 13: DC . If the charging station is located in a remote part of the site. the current will be the same as nominal household current at 110 V. adding an inverter adds complexity. Although the design is not complex. and added difficulty in servicing a broken system. and other equipment could be powered by the charging station.5. tools. The current would be transformed from direct to alternating current (AC) with an inverter.4. 5. 60 Hz. The batteries would be protected from overcharge or overdraw by a charge controller. work lights.4.1 Description of Concepts Several charging options and current configurations could be used to deliver charge to the golf carts at Jacob's Ladder. opportunity for equipment failure. when the vehicle would not be in use. After the inverter.4 Charge Storage Design Concepts 5. The following three concepts were developed through the ideation and external research processes. This design allows for the most versatile end use because any AC appliance or device could be plugged into the AC receptacle. and can be used to power a receptacle.

This arrangement cannot be used to power anything except golf carts with a similar voltage.3 Option 2: DC With Storage The DC to DC storage design allows charge to be delivered to the golf cart without the incurring the losses of inverting the charge current twice. it would be able to extend the traveling range of the -16- . No other devices can steal power intended for the vehicle charge. and guarantees that the station will be able to charge the vehicles it was designed for.5. This design also avoids the complexity and cost of the inverter. No tools or other AC devices can utilize power generated by the charging station. Figure 14: DC .4. This is beneficial because it focuses the use of the charging station. The charge controller monitors the state of the batteries.4. then back to DC within the commercial charger unit itself. the electric vehicle is plugged directly into the charge controller load circuit.4 Option 3: Onboard Storage Instead of using a fixed-location charging station. In the evenings. This system would not likely provide enough power to completely recharge the vehicle. however. once to operate the AC charger. a solar array could be placed directly on the roof of the electric vehicles. as the bank is charged by the DC power generated by the solar array.DC Storage Concept 5. and is charged by the stored energy in the batteries.

The system is simple and inexpensive. or lessen the required amount of charge time in the overnight hours. however.cart. the decisions were made with the help of concept selection matrices. An inverter will be used to convert the DC power back to AC. For these. -17- . Figure 15: DC With Onboard Storage Concept 5. The vehicle must also always be in direct sunlight for charging to take place. detailed analysis of the factors influencing the final decisions. it was found that the demonstration value and versatility of the charging station were the most important criterion for designing the method of charge storage. This weight is then used with the concept selection matrices to determine which design concept is chosen. led to the selection of the DC to AC charge storage system. This charger model will function similarly to the Solar Shell Electric Bike Charging Station. The AHP and concept selection matrices can be found in Appendix G.5 Charge Storage Concept Selection Several choices in the design process require an objective. After establishing the weight of each design criterion. The versatility of this design will allow for any AC device to operate from the output of the inverter. The heavy weight of these. it can not meet the entire power demand of the electric vehicle. The DC solar array would be connected to the batteries of the cart through a charge controller. A mobile power source would also help if the vehicle ran out of charge while far away from the charging station. The Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) matrix is used to weight the importance of each design criterion.

The path that workers must traverse is one mile long dirt road.The matrices revealed that the charger must be able to perform a wide variety of tasks. The estimated daily total for vehicle use is approximately ten miles. and are not accustomed to charging the vehicle at any point through the -18- . as well as some light random travel about the site throughout the day. The road is known to be dangerous. At a care facility like Jacob’s Ladder where the majority of the residents require constant care. it is essential that as many staff as possible arrive for work.1 Vehicle Usage The primary use for the golf carts at Jacob’s Ladder is to shuttle workers to and from the main road. and when the weather is stormy. 6. constructed for bauxite mining operations.1. though specifically designed for powering the golf carts. Figure 16: Location and length of road to Jacob’s LadderB The site workers are currently used to having the electric vehicle available at any point throughout the day. The location of the road is shown in figure 16. and two shuttle trips in the evenings. workers will not walk into the site. Anticipated use of the golf cart is to make two shuttle trips to the road and back in the mornings.1 System Sizing 6. System Level Design 6.

Figure 17: Comparison of several electric vehicle efficiencies14 It will be assumed that the golf carts operate at an efficiency of 5 miles/kWh for calculations to develop the necessary power requirements. Included is a wide range of electric vehicle types. Using the estimated trip distance. 6. the golf cart make and models used on site were unknown. -19- . the charging station should be designed to meet their needs. the assumed inefficiencies in the golf carts on site may make up for the weight difference.working hours of the day. To size the system without this information. The following figure is a comparison of several electric vehicle efficiencies compiled by the Colorado University Solar Decathlon Team. This requires the station to have the charge storage capabilities to hold the energy needed to charge the golf carts through the night. Though many are much heavier than a golf cart. The carts were acquired by donation. and vehicle efficiency as calculation factors. the cart will require approximately 2 kWh each day. therefore each cart will likely be of unique. not to change their customs. trip frequency.1.2 Estimated Vehicle Efficiency At the time of design. estimations were conducted to determine the cart efficiency based on hypothetically similar electric vehicles. Although they may be willing to change habits.

3 Available Energy: Local Solar Insolation Solar energy is more practical in some areas of the world than others.6. -20- . Figure 18: Solar insolation for the Caribbean15 6. the versatility of the design makes this an essential and unavoidable cost. Jamaica receives an equivalent average of five hours of full power sunlight each day.1. Although this charge shuffling results in a great loss.4 Anticipated System Efficiencies The design of this storage system requires monitored charging and discharging of a battery bank as well as conversion of the current from DC to AC with the use of an inverter. The table in figure 19 shows the anticipated losses for each component. The solar insolation value is a way to compare the equivalent power radiated on each portion of the earth’s surface. The addition of Figure 19: Estimated Efficiencies each step in this process also results in additional inefficiencies of the system. The system will deliver an estimated 50% of the energy generated by the solar panels. These efficiencies can be multiplied together to get the total system efficiency.1.

The approximate power demand is 660 W.000. The required panels would cost approximately $4. the cost of purchasing new panels to meet the power requirements would be much greater than the funds available. Compiling the information of the total distance the vehicles travel in a day. they responded by donating six Solarex MST43-MV panels.1.1 Meeting the Power Needs with Photovoltaics The original intentions of the project were to power the entire charger with photovoltaic panels. the required watt produced in the day can be determined.2.5 System Load Sizing Calculations Solar power systems are sized by required loads. The Homestead has fallen into disrepair. the efficiencies of the vehicle and of the charging process. Figure 21: MST43-MV panels at the PSU CFS site. When the Center for Sustainability at Penn State was informed of the need of solar panels for the Jacob’s Ladder project. Figure 20: System Sizing Calculations 6. These panels had previously provided power for the solar pump house at the Renewable Energy Homestead. however. Due to the budget limitations of the project. and the power available in Jamaica. these are expensive.2 Available Charge Sources 6. -21- .6. and is slated for demolition before the Spring of 2009. These calculations are shown in figure 20.

and can provide 400 W. Using the solar insolation value for Jamaica. “In much of Figure 23: Hybrid Power System -22- . Wind turbines are cost effective. Hybrid wind and solar energy production methods work together to supply a more constant power source than either system would do in a stand alone format. In many areas.2. This leaves 1.16 The six panels available from the Center for Sustainability total 260 W.3 Advantages and Disadvantages of Hybrid Power Systems A hybrid charging system is able to take advantage of the benefits of both the solar and wind. each panel is rated at 43. The panels are a thin-film design manufactured in 1999. The Southwest Air X turbine is priced at approximately $600. A weakness of the panels is a high inefficiency. the panels would produce approximately .65 kWh on a sunny day. 6.2.35 kWh to be produced by alternative means. wind speeds vary seasonally. Another option to provide power for the charging station would be to use a hybrid system including both solar and wind energy sources.17 Figure 22: Air X Turbine at CFS Site 6. a small wind turbine has also been decommissioned.0 W. The remaining panels needed to produce this remaining power could be purchased at approximately $1000 for a 200W panel.2 Available Wind Energy Production Resources In addition to the solar panels available at the Penn State Renewable Energy Homestead.

however. and can be installed with little extra equipment or effort. Regardless of the preliminary wind data. the front gate is a traditional feature of most Jamaican businesses.3 Station Location Concepts: Finding the Optimum Placement 6. The wind is strong in the winter when less sunlight is available. This data can be found in Appendix D. Small wind turbines are simple. and complexes.2 6.the United States. Although some areas of the facility are fenced to keep residents from danger. waste methane. and peaking in velocity near the crest of the main hill at the center of the site.4 Mustard Seed Wind Development Plans Mustard Seed Communities is hoping to expand their renewable energy portfolio to include power generated from biofuels. -23- . The diversification of power sources is a key advantage of hybrid arrangement. If any area of the site has the wind potential necessary to generate power. two site visits confirmed a steady breeze blowing out of the mountains in the Northeast. wind speeds are low in the summer when the sun shines brightest and longest. Mustard Seed is planning to develop wind turbines on the site anyway to provide a visual of sustainability. The charger could be positioned South of a grove of trees the left side of the path leading from the site entrance. it would be the location planned for the station.”19 Although no anemometer has been placed on site.2 6. 6.5 Wind Availability at Jacob’s Ladder Preliminary wind data provided by AWS Truewind for the site shows little promise at successfully placing a wind turbine on the site.2. and an on-site Met station must be established to confirm the potential of the region. In a statement accompanying the data.3. and provide an exciting visual appearance of sustainable energy sources. and wind energy. relatively efficient.1 Option 1: Site Entrance Visitors and Staff entering Jacob’s Ladder must first pass through a gated front driveway. AWS states: “the proprietary data is an estimate.”18 This arrangement produces a smooth power source. public areas. require little maintenance.2.

Visitors to the site. The chapel also serves as a valuable central hub for transportation and the movement of people throughout the site. and investors interested in the development of sustainable technologies at Jacob’s Ladder will pass through this location. -24- . Figure 24: Proposed Site Entrance Location 6. and the chapel is located near the proposed center of the site.This position would provide optimum accessibility for staff.2 Chapel Faith is at the center of the mission of Mustard Seed Communities. forming a bridge to the rest of the currently undeveloped site.3. This location would be an easily accessible location for a charger. As homes continue to be constructed stretching deeper into the site. this location will not be central to the operations. using the carts for transportation into the site.

The AHP and concept selection matrices can be found in Appendix H. the most important design criteria were determined to be the educational value of the location. Figure 26: Proposed Demonstration Village Location 6. -25- .5 Locating the charging station here would group all of the Penn State contributions in one area. and would become a more centralized facility as the site continues development. locating the charger at the center of the site.3. The results of the concept selection matrix showed that the chapel location provided the greatest benefit for educational potential. and the ability of the location to benefit future development of the site.3 Demonstration Village Penn State has begun concentrated design work on a 10-15 acre plot of the entire 100 acre site.Figure 25: Proposed Chapel Location 6. and at the gateway to the Penn State Demonstration Village. This land will serve as a demonstration village to showcase the sustainable and renewable agriculture methods Penn State is working to develop on the site.4 Station Location Selection After completing the AHP matrix for the station location.

but would not have an obvious link to the load driven by the charger. and are adequately oriented to optimize solar panel efficiency. The buildings have large galvanized Figure 27: Existing Chapel steel roofs. This library will serve as the gateway to the demonstration village. and contain resources for the Mustard Seed staff to maintain and learn about the technologies on site. Figure 28: Container Library Mount -26- . and the administration building.2 Mounted on Proposed Library The first Penn State project to be installed at Jacob’s Ladder is a sustainable library constructed from a recycled shipping container.5. These buildings. and keeps the solar panels from being shaded or damaged. Panels mounted in this location would be visible.1 Mounted on Existing Building The hill at the center of the site is occupied by two structures: the chapel.6. This scenario groups the charger with other Penn State projects. originally constructed for the Jamaican wharves. were transported to Jacob’s Ladder after they were decommissioned from service. 6.5.5 Station Configuration Concepts: A Functional Design 6.

The ground mount also has an associated risk: the panels could easily be blocked by vehicles.3 Ground Mount Perhaps the most simple option for solar panel mounting is a ground rack. The power output of shaded panels is dramatically reduced. Figure 29: Ground Mounted 6. The ground mount provides a low profile. or damaged. 7. and the charger . and gets the panels off of the ground where they could be blocked. This design places the panels at a facility that is meant to be the center for educational information regarding sustainability. processing electronics. Detailed Design The charging station is made up of three basic components: the charge source.5. and the decisions and procedures used to arrive at the final design. a reduced wind load for hurricanes. -27- . Panels on the ground also are at a higher risk of being damaged. The AHP and concept selection matrices can be found in Appendix I. This section is an exploration of each of these systems. it was determined that educational value.user interface. and durability of the design were the most important factors influencing the design choice. safety.6. growing vegetation or even buildings constructed after the installation of the panels. The library mounting scenario was chosen. and is a stand-alone system.6 Station Configuration Selection After evaluating the criteria for the station configuration.

6 A. The I-V curve confirms the panel specifications that claim a maximum power point of 43 W when the voltage is 72 VDC. An important tool to understand the operating characteristics of a solar panel is the current voltage curve (I-V curve) as designated by the manufacturer. no other electronics could be utilized from the Homestead. Recycled shipping containers are widely used across Jamaica for houses and shops.16 Figure 30: MST43-MV I-V Curve 7. therefore the maximum power point of the panel is at the knee of the curve.1 Solar Array The Penn State University Center for Sustainability donated six Solarex MST43-MV thin film solar panels.8 Figure 30 shows the I-V curve for the MST43-MV. Electrical power is the product of current and voltage.2 Solar Integrated Green Roof The Jacob’s Ladder Library design is a twenty foot long by eight foot wide shipping container. Although the panels are designed for use in moderate to high voltage arrays. The panels had previously been utilized in a solar water pumping station at the Renewable Energy Homestead.1.1. and the current is 0. The curve is used to determine the maximum current and voltage of the panel. the panels were previously utilized with a 12 VDC battery bank. creating an -28- .7. As much of the system had already been salvaged. The two curves shown in the figure represent different light test illuminations: the upper curve is tested at 1 kW/m2 and the lower is tested at 250 W/m2.1 Station Design: The Charge Sources 7. Jamaica receives the majority of their goods in a constant stream of container ships.

Loaded containers are normally stacked on ships up to eight containers high. The solar array will be mounted on a wooden -29- . but builds thermal mass on the roof.1. The added roof weight is insignificant if carried by these supports. a frame has been designed from 2” x 6” boards to sit on the side rails of the container. but also adds a large amount of weight to the roof. One weakness of shipping containers is a lack of insulation. containers are prone to overheating if placed in direct sunlight. The solar array will also shade the majority of the container roof. sturdy shell for a wide variety of needs.available supply of shipping containers. The frame serves to contain the support the green roof. Especially in tropical climates like Jamaica. The metal box provides a weather-tight. Growing plants on a roof requires approximately four inches of soil. moderating the temperature of the living space below. and will be elevated Figure 31: Solar Array and Green Roof slightly to allow air flow to whisk excess heat from the roof.20 7. One advantage of the solar integrated green roof design is provide a form of insulation for the roof. To accomplish this. To support the combined weight of the green roof and solar array.3 Solar Array Mounting Configuration A green roof is an effective insulator. and to provide a mounting location for the solar array. a frame has been designed to transmit the weight to the four corner support posts of the container.

especially in Caribbean. The mount for solar panels must be safe and secure. All connections on the roof rack are also to be made with screws instead of nails. The frame is angled at eighteen degrees from horizontal. the structure was was designed with similar or stronger materials and techniques than the buildings already on site.21 Figure 32: Solar Panel Attachment Design -30- . Screws hold stronger in the wood. hurricane-prone locations.frame constructed from 2” x 4” boards. To ensure that the solar roof rack would survive the high winds of the hurricane. and rip out less frequently in a hurricane. and the entire assembly is secured to the roof rack with lag bolts. equal to the latitude for the site.20 Figure 31: Solar Array Roof Mount Assembly The six Solarex MST-43MV panels are affixed to the mount with two angle iron rail pieces on the top and bottom of the panel. Neighboring panels are bolted together.

The turbine is controlled by a microprocessor. the turbine should be located close to the container library to promote the vision of a unified power system for the building.4 Wind Turbine The Air X wind turbine is rated for 12 VDC output. or if the battery is charged. 7. The wind speed and direction data for the Mustard Seed site are located in Appendix D.7.17 Regardless of engineering requirements for power loss.1. A unique feature of the turbine is the speed control function. only 46 inches.5 Wind Turbine Placement The chapel location is ideal for the placement of the wind turbine. yet the turbine is capable of generating 400 W with a 28 mph wind. and a steady wind blows from the North. allowing the turbine to be connected directly to a battery bank. The turbine will reduce rotation speed if the wind speed is to 17 Figure 33: Monthly Output of Air X TurbineH high. The turbine must be located near the charging station to reduce the losses of the generated DC power. The rotor diameter is small.1. The area is the highest location on the site. Wind Direction Chapel Admin Figure 34: Red Dot Shows Proposed Location of Wind Turbine on North Side of -31- .

The primary wind direction is not impeded by the structure. The guy wires are attached to the cement piers surrounding the pole.5 Electrical Connectivity To protect the wires from the elements. -32- . A ground mounted turbine can quickly be disassembled. To provide rigidity yet ease of disassembly. and affixed to the ground with three guy wires. The wind turbine may face power losses due to the proximity of the turbine to the chapel. Mustard Seed plans to enclose the sides as the development of the site continues. and will not face as the same strength winds as a turbine mounted high on an existing building. and the difficulty to repair and access the turbine in the case of a hurricane. and also helps to keep the wiring organized. the turbine will be mounted on a twenty foot long piece of metal schedule 40 pipe.1. Another option for the mount of the turbine was to attach the support poles to the main beams of the chapel. This mounting scenario was discarded due to concerns of vibration. All areas of cement will need to be reinforced with rebar. Although the structure is currently open-air. noise. The plastic enclosure on conduit keeps the wire from deteriorating in the sunlight. but turbulence from the building may reduce the power generated. Figure 35: Sketch of Guy Wires 7. all cabling will be strung through electrical conduit.

wire gauge has been standardized by the American Wire Gauge (AWG).7. The box is manufactured by Outback. The front panel contains circuit breakers which enable the batteries. and was originally intended to pair with the PS1 power system and Outback charge controller. with the potential of starting electrical fires. To avoid possible hazards. Decreasing the wire diameter increases the resistance of the current through the wire. 7.8 Figure 36 shows the relative wire cross sections of several different wire gauges. the wire is in danger of overheating. The breaker box is the location for all electrical connection in the system. The wiring for the solar array and the wind turbine will be combined in the breaker box.2 Station Design: Processing Electronics 7. As resistance increases.2.2 Wire Sizing Calculations The sizing of electrical wire in any power system is important because the gauge of the wire determines the total current that can safely flow through wire. and panels to be disconnected. Figure 36: AWG Sizing Scale8 -33- .1 DC Breaker Box The original breaker box from the Renewable Energy Homestead at Penn State was salvaged to be reused for the solar array. Every device in the charging station is routed through the breaker box.2.

and therefore most charge controllers operate at this range. The Solarex MST43-MV panels operate at a moderate voltage range of 72 VDC nominal.2. and 12. and 60 VDC battery banks. The voltage step down from the 72 VDC array to a 12 VDC battery bank is made possible by the digital Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) circuitry. A solar array typically operates at 12 . The location of 12 V is designated on the IV curve by the letter A. Few commercially available charge controllers can actually accept a voltage this high.78 A current. 36.36 W compared to the rated output of the panels at 43 W. The MX-60 was primarily chosen for the wide voltage range of input and outputs.24 VDC. resulting in an output of 9. The power output at A can be calculated by multiplying 12 V by approximately 0.8 -34- .3 Charge Controller The charge controller used for the charging station is the Outback MX-60. This function searches the array to determine the maximum power point voltage. here 12 V. an 80 percent power loss in the output of the panels. 24.48. The maximum power point is marked by the letter B.22 The MST43-MV I-V curve in Figure 37 has been annotated to describe the effect of MPPT on the power output of the Figure 37: Effects of MPPTI A B system. Without the step-down abilities of the MX-60. and proceeds to charge the batteries at this point. accepting any PV array voltage up to 72 VDC.7. the charge controller could only charge the batteries at the voltage of the battery bank.

the storage in the battery bank is larger than a single day of operation. Since power is the product of current and voltage. totaling 360 Amp hours of storage.22 7. It can handle up to 60 A of input current. In other areas. the bank should be designed to operate in the required range without discharging below 50% of the total storage capacity. the battery bank would be large enough to allow for more than one day of storage.8 To maximize the life of the battery. where the solar array will likely output no more than 3. As anticipated.16 kWh.6 A. In this configuration. The approximate required demand for the golf carts is 2 kWh. The four UB12900 batteries had been purchased as a replacement batteries for a set used in the 2007 Solar Decathlon competition. The batteries operate at 12 VDC nominal.4 Battery Bank The battery bank was donated to the project by the Penn State Solar Decathlon team. although the bank can be -35- . and divided by 1000. Ideally. the current will add and the voltage will remain constant. Here. and the tight budget demands on this project did not allow additional batteries to be purchased to expand the bank. The unit also has many features that are beneficial for educational demonstration. a kilowatt hour is equal to the Amp hour storage of the battery bank multiplied by the voltage of the battery bank. The relatively high cost of batteries. The four batteries will be wired in parallel. These data can be used to compare the output of the power generation sources with weather conditions. The MX-60 logs and saves 64 days of operational data that can be reviewed.2. are each 90 Amp hours. the Outback MX-60 is more of a powerful and sophisticated device than the charging station would require. the total kilowatt hours stored by the four UB12900 batteries is 2. and be used to log the energy production of the entire system. This battery bank then has 180 Amp hours of storage. A simple conversion can be used to convert the total Amp hours to the number of kilowatt hours stored in the batteries.

The voltage provided by a modified sine wave inverter does not follow the same smooth oscillation as a pure sine wave generator as shown in Figure 38. The efficiency of motors and transformers will be reduced. and those that generate a pure sine wave. and more sensitive electronics will experience uncharacteristic performance problems. The difference is in the quality of the power. 7.expanded at any point. Figure 38: Comparison of Modified Sine Wave and Pure Sine PowerJ The consequence of using a modified sine wave instead of a pure sine wave is diminished performance from electrical equipment using the output power of the inverter.24 -36- .5 Inverter Inverters are separated into two primary categories: those that produce a modified sine wave. additional batteries can be added at any time. Problems such as crackling in audio equipment or rolling lines on digital display screens are common results of diminished power quality. and the price of the inverter. Also.2. because the batteries are wired in parallel.

These outlets allow the charger to simply plug into the inverter. In this instance. In this case. The side view of the inverter in figure 39 shows the output and status indicators on the GP-1750HD inverter.25 The bar graph meters. a modified sine wave inverter was chosen. over temp and overload indicators are valuable status indicators to help diagnose possible problems with the inverter. When designing a system for the lowest possible cost. where the donated solar panels and wind turbine prevent the quantity of available charge from being the most serious concern. The most significant feature of the inverter for a small scale charging station with few loads is the pair of AC outlets. the modified sine wave inverter may cause decreased performance for the charger. Figure 39 : Side Panel View of Inverter Showing Indicators and ConnectionsK -37- . it can be difficult to determine where to sacrifice quality for price. The Go-Power GP-1750HD inverter is capable of continuously producing 1500 W of output power.

When the golf carts pull up to the library container.3 Station Design: The Charger . the plug can be inserted into the 110 VAC receptacle for the duration of the charge.User Interface 7. The output of the charging station is an AC receptacle. and the charging station should be designed to be flexible. After an unfortunate string of days with little wind or sun.2 Golf Cart Charger The golf cart is charged with a mobile charging unit. The design for the charger must also complement the intended purpose of the library. To accomplish this.1 Benefits of an AC Receptacle The charger has been designed and sized specifically for a single golf cart charging unit. or fan could be plugged into this receptacle with little consequence to the total available power. radio. an overall design for the container was created.3. the Jacob’s Ladder site operators keep the charger on the golf cart at all times in a small compartment beneath the rear seat. the needs of the site will likely change.7. Currently. 7. Although this is the intended use of the power.1 Charging Unit Placement All charger components must be grouped in the container library to maximize their functionality. and educational potential. -38- . when the station is depleted of charge. 7. The charger is plugged into the golf cart.4. The design specifies a corner of the container to hold all of the solar components in a centralized and concentrated location.3. allowing the users to plug any 110 VAC device. the cart can dock instead at another receptacle. A light. accessibility. and has a standard US three-prong plug to connect to a 110 VAC source.4 Station Overall System Design 7.

visitors will be able to view the solar electrical components immediately upon entering the door of the container.Figure 40: Container Floor PlanC In this arrangement. This placement of the electrical components will unify the entire North half of the container as an informational area for sustainable development of the site. All equipment is wall mounted above the level of the air vents.4.2 Electrical Component Arrangement The electrical components are all to be mounted on a sheet of 1/2” thick plywood. A B C D E Figure 41: Component Arrangement -39- . 7. Figure 41 shows the mounting location of the system components. The components are arranged to provide a logical flow of electrical current through the equipment. This location has been chosen to reduce the risk of water damage to the electrical components.

Upon completion of the container library. and interface smoothly with the library bookshelves. bookshelves will interface with the edges of the charging station rack mount to form a unified transition between library and electrical container spaces. all components are protected. In this arrangement. they should be kept out of reach. Figure 42: Component Mounting Scenario -40- . then enter the Outback breaker box. and will be covered by plexiglass. The rear 2”x4” support posts will be bolted to the Western wall of the container.4.3 Solar Charging Station Rack Mount The charging station rack mount has been designed to hold and protect the solar components. The breaker box forms the central network for the remaining components. Wires from the solar array will first enter the disconnect box (A). both the charge controller and inverter are wired onto respective terminals of the breaker box. 7. The final disconnect box is used to separate the batteries from the breaker box. place the components in an educational arrangement. yet visible for viewing. The batteries will be placed off the ground on an extended bookshelf. is found in Appendix O. Although batteries are not particularly dangerous. The full circuit diagram of the breaker box.

due to the periodic rain.7. Detailed budget information can be found in Appendix P.2 Murphy’s Law 8. a temporary foundation was constructed from cement blocks. Implementation: Jamaica Design-Build 8. Daily periods of rain wash over the Blue Mountains.1 Weather November is rainy season in Jamaica. The team had planned a four day intensive build to complete the projects. the Penn State Jacob’s Ladder Design-Build team traveled to Jamaica to construct the shipping container library and the solar wind hybrid charging station. Neil Brown. Similar concrete blocks on site crumbled when used as a stepping stool. the charging station components could all be acquired for approximately $1100. 8. As a result. The MSC staff working in Jamaica intended to build a concrete foundation for the container before the team arrived.5 Project Budget and Cost Analysis The project was sponsored by In total. A total of five University students were led by Dr.2. 2008.1 Overview of Design Build Week Over the Thanksgiving week of 2008. An additional $750 was spent to ship the components to Jamaica. Instead. this foundation could not be poured. Concerns over the strength of the blocks led to caution during the build week. massive Figure 43: Temporary Block Foundation building components were not assembled such as the green roof and solar mounting rack -41- . 8. or even when moved. The team had coordinated the delivery of the container and the shipping of the solar components to arrive on site before the team arrived on November 22. however.

a two week notification was needed to get the materials picked up. or beneficial for the local economy of Jamaica. the Jacob’s Ladder team contracted with an independent shipping company. MSC representatives reported to the Penn State Jacob’s Ladder development team that a shipment could be sent to Jamaica in the period of two weeks. Another shipping option was necessary. rather. The day before departure for Jamaica. and arrive on site.1 Theory of Appropriate Technology The absence of solar components brought a new set of questions. a faith-based non profit organization.2.3.2 Little more than a month before the implementation week.8. Costs were reduced dramatically by utilizing the solar panels and the wind turbine donated by the Penn State Center for Sustainability. Should the installation be pushed off until the next trip to Jamaica? Will future Penn State design teams know how to install the solar power system? Could the charging station be constructed and maintained by local Jamaicans without help of Penn State? -42- .2 Where are the Solar Components? To reduce the budget. The components were packed. plans were made to ship many of the donated materials to the site. In this way. a better design for the site. and the new estimated arrival date was after the implementation week. Next. 8.3 Revised Plans 8. Though not particularly sustainable. and the shipment was made. Shipping required another two months. the high cost of new materials led to the hybrid power system. promising arrival of the solar components over a week before the team was schedule to arrive in Jamaica. every attempt was made to acquire donated project materials in the United States. the team learned that the shipment of the components had been delayed. These plans were formulated after learning that MSC has free international shipping with Food For the Poor. the team was informed by MSC staff that the two week quote had been a mistake.

and the appropriateness of the design. how they are assembled. A masters student with an interest in solar power for water pumping applications will be starting at UTech in the Spring of -43- . The Engineering Design School at Penn State has partnered with the University of Technology (UTech) in Kingston. economically.3 Developing Local Connections To test the appropriateness of the solar installation manual.3.3. UTech is again interested to partner with the installation of the solar components. an installation manual will be developed to describe the system components. and to build sustainable international relationships for future developmental work at Jacob’s Ladder. and cared for.26 When implementing a new technology. The installation manual will begin as a specific instructional document for installing this specific solar charger design. 8. but if the designer hundreds of miles away is the only person who understands the functionality of the entire system. Jamaica. The final question set a new standard for the continuation of the project that should’ve been with the project from the beginning. Jamaican University students will assemble the charging station with the installation manual. In an attempt to make the design comprehendible and within technological reach of the local staff workers. A technology is not a solution if individuals on the ground cannot understand enough to keep it working. it lacked the self-sustaining component that frequently makes similar projects fail. can a build-and-run installation ever be successful? Although the charging station encompassed many aspects of sustainability. 8. Appropriate technology utilizes environmentally.2 Installation and Instruction Manual The charger is not particularly complicated. even the smallest glitch could derail successful operation. In past projects. and socially sustainable solutions for communities to reduce poverty and protect natural resources. Local technical connections are needed to guarantee the successful future operation of the charging station. but over time will develop into a more general installation manual to train and prepare electrical installers for solar work.

8. and lack of solar components.1 Placement and Finishing of Container Library Despite the unfortunate weather conditions. Jamaican University professors.3.4. windows and doors.4 Results of Design-Build Week 8. One of the goals of MSC is to give back to the neighboring communities struggling to solve daily problems. After completion of the chapel. The numerous alternative energy technology companies in Jamaica will be invited to share products and expertise. Upon installation of the solar charger. Figure 44: South Container Elevation -44- . students and interested community members will be invited to learn about alternative energy and sustainability. Holes were cut in the container wall to form spaces for air vents. the container library and sensory garden will be a welcoming place for residents to pause and relax.4 Future Alternative Energy Conference The design team is hoping to expand on the partnership formed from the solar installation into an international forum on alternative energy. The Penn State University will plan a weekend long alternative energy conference at the MSC Jacob’s Ladder site. 8.2009. The conference will close by re-assembling portions of the hybrid charger to give conference attendees hands on experience with solar and wind systems. a large amount of work still was completed on the container library. This student will work with the Penn State Jacob’s Ladder design team to install the power system.

and display posters.Figure 45: View of Container looking Westward toward Chapel 8. The photo on the left is an actual image of the container taken at the end of the build week.4. books. Figure 46: Developed Container Library -45- .2 Completed Library Interior The interior of the library was converted from a empty shipping container into library with bookshelves surrounding the perimeter of the building. Figure 46 is a view from the open doors of the container. The photo on the right is an image of the container with digitally superimposed solar components.

1 Experiences and Lessons Learned The difficulty planning for and organizing the build week in Jamaica revealed many realities of international work. International relationships are being developed that would not have otherwise. Proper preparation and planning does not guarantee a successful implementation. Conclusions 9. The shipping problems changed the scope of the project. Two golf carts were acquired by MSC. and cultural differences clash. During the first community assessment trip to the Mustard Seed site in January of 2008. only one is currently operational. the cart usage could be observed for the first time.2.3 Identification of Electrical Vehicle Specifications Sizing calculations for the charger specifications were completed before the electric vehicles arrived at the Jacob’s Ladder site. It is difficult. On this trip. although he was suffering from an injured foot and had difficulty walking. language. however.4. and as a result.1 A Justification for Alternatives: The Cost of Power Though alternative power systems may seem complex and expensive. The primary user of the cart was the site operator. plans change.8. especially in areas of developing nations far removed from an electrical provider. 9. the entire design became more sustainable. The cart is an EZ-GO TXT Shuttle. and project goals are redefined. Brother Anthony on many quick trips about the site. 9. It is important to remember that power is not free. When weather. The project revealed that problems can be an opportunity to improve a design. the Jamaican Public Service (JPS) was working to erect 13 concrete power transmission poles to carry electricity to the Jacob’s Ladder site.2 Improvements: A Marketable Design 9. Although Mustard Seed as a -46- .

a high voltage. The panels operated at a low efficiency. the solar panels carried a set of disadvantages. Had all of the components been purchased. When long power-line runs are brought into consideration.non-profit organization did not pay for the transmission lines. and decreased the cost and sophistication of components. the cost of the charge sources (solar panels and wind turbine) would have been beyond the available project budget. Electricity in many developing Figure 47: Power Lines Stretching to MSC Site countries is largely a temporary notion. even if a community is lucky enough to have a power transmission line stretching to their homes. Without these donations. off-grid power systems may become the only option. a unified design would have greatly streamlined the charger. the Center for Sustainability at Penn State was able to provide a large amount of the equipment. in this case. -47- . significantly more than the available grants. and a sophisticated charge controller to make the charge usable.2 An Analysis of the Project Costs The implementation of any solar power system is a significant investment. Variable rates and intermittent service keep the grid from being a reliable power source. they are quite costly. Despite the financial advantage. required a large mounting space.2. 9. Fortunately for the success of the project.

3 The Redesign In an attempt to determine the actual cost of the charger without donations and unusually group parts. Two of these panels produce the same power as the six Solarex thin-film panels used in the charging station. and outputs a current of 7. The turbine is microprocessor controlled. 12V Charge Controller The charge controller is the most significant change from the original design.9. but complete in operational functionality. The Morningstar Sunsaver is simple.39 A. producing a total power rating of 130 W.2. therefore the system will loose efficiency as the solar intensity changes throughout the day.27 Morningstar Prostar 15A.28 Go Power GP-1750HD Inverter The Go Power inverter is the same model as implemented in the charing station -48- . The primary disadvantage of the Sunsaver compared to more expensive charge controllers is the lack of Maximum Power Point Tracking capabilities. This charger has an identical power output with the Library Charger. Southwest Wind Power Air X 12 V Turbine The Southwest wind turbine is the same design as the turbine used in the charging station. the charger has been redesigned with new. commercially available parts.17 Kyocera KC130TM 130 W The Kyocera polycrystalline panel operates at 12 VDC. and does not require a charge controller.

25 UB12900 Sealed 12 V AGM Battery 90 Ah The redesign utilizes the same battery bank. The combiner box contains the busbars and fuses for electrical interconnections.Component Cost Estimation -49- . The batteries are connected in parallel.23 Midnite Solar MNPV6 Combiner Box The combiner box is the central linking unit for all electrical components. The bank could be expanded by adding an additional battery if additional storage is desired. The inverter is low cost and delivers dual 110 VAC outlet for plug loads.29 Square D Disconnects Electrical disconnects are needed to cut electrical power to components during system maintenance.30 Figure 48: Charging Station Redesign . providing 360 Ah of storage. The Square D disconnect utilizes 100 A fuses to protect electrical inputs. making transitions quick and

however. past experiences abroad are valuable in shaping a global worldview.3 Feasibility of Implementing Design in Developing Nations The design is feasible for developing countries. Whether working internationally or at home. and knowledgeable technicians exist to answer questions and repair broken systems. As expected. 9. I am now beginning to grasp the importance of all aspects of a sustainable design: how does it benefit the people. the most meaningful learning experiences have happened outside of the classroom. manufacturers use interchangeable parts. A benefit of solar power is that there are no moving parts. creating systems requiring very low maintenance.4 Personal Impact of Development Work After completing a full degree of credits at Penn State. the figures become much closer. in many cases this cost may be the only option for power. their financial well-being. Each time I leave Jamaica. The cost of solar power systems is significant. and the health of their environment. I have the knowledge that I will be back before long. -50- . The system cost is certainly reasonable for a small scale power system. when shipping costs are added. with three trips and counting. I believe that an international education is one of the most important prerequisites for life after college. My work with Mustard Seed Communities and their Jacob’s Ladder community has been my longest extended international experience. This project has helped me to understand the importance of sustainability. especially if the solar energy systems are sold as kits. however. 9. the cost of the components is far greater than the project budget.

To the Carter Academic Service Entrepreneur (CASE) Grant Selection Committee. thank you for sacrificing your Thanksgiving break to work from dawn to dusk in Jamaica. thank you for donating a wealth of system components. To Dr. hope. thank you for sending me to Penn State. the Alliance for Earth Sciences. Thank you for placing trust. Neil Brown for the mentoring and friendship. To Spud. and the Schreyer Honors College. I think we’re still on track to save the world. thank you for opening the door to international development and appropriate technology. Engineering. Acknowledgments This project never would have been completed without the patience. Colledge. To my family. Lau for teaching me about sustainability. and Development in Africa (AESEDA). To Dr. and cannot wait till I can call you my wife. -51- . and family. Thank you Dr. thank you for your endless love and encouragement. To Dr. and confidence in idealistic undergraduates. Finally. and Grim. Mclean. To Vaughn. Riley and the Penn State Center for Sustainability. thank you for providing the funding to make this project possible. I love you. to Ruth. friends. sacrifice.10. and assistance of many professors. and encouraging my educational development.

2 Concept Selection Matrix 13 13 13 Appendix I: Station Design Selection Matrices I.1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix G.2 Concept Selection Matrix 14 14 14 Appendix J: Dimensioned Library Drawings Appendix K: Dimensioned Solar Mounting Rack Appendix L: Wind Turbine Mounting Design Appendix M: Dimensioned Solar Charger Drawings Appendix N: Wind Turbine Hybrid Wiring Scheme Appendix O: Breaker Box Wiring Schematic Appendix P: Detailed Budget and Cost Analysis 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 -1- .Appendix Appendix A: References Appendix B: Image Credits Appendix C : Community Assessment: Site Maps Appendix D: Wind Data Appendix E: Needs Assessment Evaluation Appendix F: Quality Function Deployment (QFD) Matrix Appendix G: Charge Storage Selection Matrices G.1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix I.1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix H.2 Concept Selection Matrix 2 5 6 7 8 11 12 12 12 Appendix H: Site Location Selection Matrices H.

" Jacob's Ladder: A Sustainable Community for Disabled Individuals of Jamaica. "The Plan for Jacob’s Ladder. Marshall. Interview with Eric M. Marshall and Eric M. Nanosolar. 4." 21 June 2006. 2005.. Sauder. 2008 <http://www. Inc. Ramkissoon. Mar. Dunlop. Jim. 9. New York: PennWell Corporation. Steven F. Steven F. -2- . Borwn. 2007. geography/mining.html>. Sauder. "Mining. Marshall and Neil E Brown. 22 Nov. 2008. Dec. "Latitude and Longitude: latlong_us. Oct. 3. Homewood.bcca. Todd W.mustardseed.discoverjamaica. Steven>. Mustard Seed Communities. Moran. Interview with Eric M. Mar. 2008 <http://nanotechweb. Sauder and Neil E. Baxter. Brother Anthony. Neil E. Brown.. 2007 <http:// www. "Mission Statement. Matthew. Sauder. 2008. Illinois: American Technical. "Jacob's Ladder Planning Sessions. Marshall and Neil E.html#pennsylvania>. 5. "Nanosolar to build world's largest solar cell factory. Richard.Brown. Interview with Eric M. Nov. 10. Ramkissoon. Stafford. 6. 2008.Appendix A: References 1. Photovoltaic Systems. 2. 2-3. Vol. 11. 2008.htm> 7." 2007. 1. Mar. Ed. Gregory. Clyde. Energy Storage : A Nontechnical Guide. 4 Dec. and Eric M. 8." BCCA. 2008 <http://www." The Gleaner. 4 Dec." Telephone interview with Steven F.

Solarex. "AWS Truewind Wind Resources. 2008 <http://www. 2-4." Thesis. 17. Air X Owners Manual. The Definitive Guide to Hurricane Protection. 2007. electricity/index. Outback Power Systems.” Cruise Car. Marshall. 23. 2007.” Electric Transportation of Arkansas. 18 August>. Universal Battery. Colorado University. 19. 16. 2008. 18. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. 7 Sept. "Sustainable Design and Construction of a Library for Disabled Children of 22. 15. Transportation Analysis for the Solar Decathalon product-solar-roof-kit. <http:// shop.cruisecarinc." 4 Oct.altenergystore.12. 12 MX60 PV MPPT Charge Controller: Installation. 29 January 2007.html>. UB12900 Specifications Sheet. 2007. 9 October 2002. “Solar Roof Kit. Mexico and Central America Solar Insolation Map. Small "Hybrid" Solar and Wind Electric Systems.eere.hurricaneprotectionguidance.qscstrfrnt02?categoryId=1&productId=1> 13. Alternative Energy Store. Tech. Programming and User’s Manual. Inc. Steven F. 2008 <http://howto. 2005. 2 Dec.htm> 14. 5 Oct. 21. 2008 <http://apps1. Hurricane Protection Guidance.etarkansas. Photovoltaic Modules:" Email to Matthew Moran. “Sunray Solar Roof Kit. -3- .com/hurricane-protection/ protecting-yourself-from-hurricanes/home-hurricane-protection.jsessionid=DC1A02EA6D520EA191880B9 4D762044F. 18 August 2008.cfm/mytopic=11130>. <http://www. 1999. Solar Decathalon Team. Southwest Windpower.

2007. NCAT. The National Center for Appropriate Technology. GO Power! Modified Sine Wave Inverter Owner’s Manual. 30.AC Converter Sizing Considerations. Enclosed Safety Switches. -4- . 29. 26. 2008 <http:// www.24. 27. 2007. Kyocera. DC . 28. Kyocera KC130TM Specifications Sheet. 25. Midnite Solar.php>. Morningstar Corporation. 6 Dec. 1999. 2008 <http:// Morningstar Prostar Specifications>.bdbatteries. 2 Dec. BD Batteries.ncat. 2008. Midnite Solar MNPV6 Installation Instructions. Square D. 2008. 2008. Go Power! Electric Inc.

2008 <http://www. consumer/your_home/electricity/index. Solarex. 2 Dec. Digital Image.maps. Digital Survey Image. 5 Oct. 2007. Wind Rose Chart.Appendix B: Image Credits A. 2003. Real Goods.AC Converter Sizing Considerations. M.eere. L.oksolar.treehugger. 2 Dec. 2005. 2008 <http://apps1. 2008." 2008. Tree Hugger.cfm/mytopic=11130>. B.R. 1999. 2008 < AWS Truewind. 2007. files/ +power/solar+electric.realgoods. 2007.Jacob’s Ladder Development Mean Annual Wind Speed at 30 Meters AWS Truewind. Air X Turbine. Lighting. Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. BD Batteries.php>. GO Power! Modified Sine Wave Inverter Owner’s Manual. Ultra Capacitors. OK Solar. Digital>. Mustard Seed Communities. 5 Dec. Digital Image. Mais & Associates Ltd. Digital image. 2008. J. 2008 < http://i. Go Power! Electric lighting/>. Digital Image. Haddon Hall. -5- . Solar Window. 15 Nov. E.mustardseed. Mustard Seed . Saint Ann. G. DC .jpg>. 12 Sept. Penn State Jacob’s Ladder Development Team. 2008 <>.google. 2008. I. Google. Photovoltaic Modules: MST-43MV. N. Digital Image. Digital Image. C. 5 Dec. Small "Hybrid" Solar and Wind Electric Systems. Digital Image. K. Digital Image. Southwest Windpower. J. D. Digital Image. "Solar Electric. Jamaica Satellite.bdbatteries. 2008 < http://www. MSC 2008 <http:// www. 7>.

Appendix C : Community Assessment: Site Maps To Ocho Rios To Moneague Figure 49: Jacob’s Ladder Political MapB Figure 50: Jacob’s Ladder Topographic MapL -6- .

Appendix D: Wind Data Figure 51: Preliminary Wind data for MSC Jacob’s Ladder Compiled by AWS TruewindM Figure 52: Wind Rosette Showing Primary Wind Directions At Jacob’s LadderN -7- .

Matthew Moran is the United States project relations director for Mustard Seed. with hopes that Jacob’s Ladder would become a community showcase of sustainable and renewable technologies. and determine weightings.Appendix E: Needs Assessment Evaluation Before the start of the project. develop design criteria. The following diagram can be used to clarify the flow of information into the design process. Both MSC planners. several individuals were questioned to help define customer needs. based in New York. Penn State engineers and site planners will also contribute expertise to create a design-build project that can be used by the Jacob’s Ladder community. Moran plans to use sustainability as a marketing point of attraction. Moran and Penn State engineers have been working on a plan to phase sustainable technologies into the Jacob’s Ladder project. and staff operators feed customer input into the concept development stage of the design process. He contacted the University beginning a partnership to develop sustainable initiatives into the site. Figure 53: Information Flow Process Diagram Matthew Moran Students from Penn State University began working with Mustard Seed Communities in the Fall of 2007. Moran feels that bringing sustainability to the site will not only benefit -8- .

2008 meeting.2 Brother Anthony The tangible need for this design project was originally expressed by Brother Anthony. this cost could be more than a quarter of their monthly income. This cost forces most of the workers to walk the final distance into the site. the problem was explained more fully. in a January 2008 visit to Jamaica. but garner grants and international interest. Since the beginning of the project. the need for improvements in staff transportation was again mentioned by Brother Anthony.000 Ja ($200 US). Although taxi fares are reasonable on well traveled routes. Brother Anthony explained that this cost for this final mile could exceed $14. -9- .Mustard Seed by controlling the cost of utilities and supplies. travel the last mile back into the site incurs significant rate increases. Brother Anthony explained that few staff persons from the surrounding towns own vehicles for personal transportation. versatile and reliable alternative energy source for any possible device installed in the community. On days with inclement weather. This time. During a January 5th. Moran supported the idea of using solar power as a simple. Anthony explained that in a country where a large percentage of the population is living in poverty. During a meeting with Brother Anthony on March 13. This results in a highly variable staff attendance for a medical facility which requires all of its personnel to be in attendance. 2008. the staff won’t come. The most common method for transportation to the site is the local taxi service. He mentioned that they were hoping to get golf carts to shuttle staff into the site. Jacob’s Ladder site operator.

Neil provided valuable insight to culturally shape designs to work in the country he is most familiar with. Brother Anthony stated that MSC staff was working to find electric golf carts to carry staff to and from the main road.4 Neil Brown Neil is a Post-Doctoral student in animal science at Penn State. developing long range solutions for Penn State’s future involvement. and managing many of the day to day needs for all of the Mustard Seed Jamaica sites. and a native Jamaican. Clyde informed the Penn State engineers that Jacob’s Ladder would be receiving a shipment of two electric powered golf carts to be used for transportation on and to the site.5 -10- . Early on in the project. Neil also emphasized the importance of securing and maintaining the safety of any equipment placed on site from theft. Clyde was questioned about Brother Anthony’s golf cart request During a March 13. 2008 meeting. back into the site. This long range plan includes a detailed integration of solar power with the developing Jacob’s Ladder site. Anthony felt that irregularities and deficiencies in transportation were some of the greatest problems for preserving the operation of the site.7 Clyde Ramkissoon Clyde is in charge of coordinating supplies. Neil expressed the need to keep any designs simple. Neil has worked on the Mustard Seed project with Penn State since the beginning. and as free as possible of maintenance concerns.

Appendix F: Quality Function Deployment (QFD) Matrix Figure 54: Quality Function Deployment Matrix -11- .

1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix Figure 55: Charge Storage AHP Matrix G.2 Concept Selection Matrix Figure 56: Charge Storage Concept Selection Matrix -12- .Appendix G: Charge Storage Selection Matrices G.

2 Concept Selection Matrix Figure 58: Station Location Concept Selection Matrix -13- .1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix Figure 57: Station Location AHP Matrix H.Appendix H: Site Location Selection Matrices H.

Appendix I: Station Design Selection Matrices
I.1 Analytical Hierarchy Process Matrix

Figure 59: Station Design AHP Matrix

I.2 Concept Selection Matrix

Figure 60: Station Design Concept Selection Matrix


Appendix J: Dimensioned Library Drawings

Figure 61: Front View of Library

Figure 62: Side View of Library -15-

Appendix K: Dimensioned Solar Mounting Rack

Figure 63: Top View of Solar Mounting Rack

Figure 64: Side View of Solar Mounting Rack


Appendix L: Wind Turbine Mounting Design

Figure 65: Wind Turbine Guy Wire Arrangement Design and Installation Notes: The pole will be greased, wrapped in plastic, then cement will be poured around it.

After the cement hardens, the pole can be pulled out, plastic removed, and a shaft will be formed in the cement. This eliminates the need for nested metal pipe to support the turbine. The guy wires will be attached to the cement piers surrounding the pole. All areas of cement will need to be reinforced with rebar. The turbine post is approximately 25’ schedule 40 metal pipe, and the guy wire posts are mounted on a circle with a radius of 10’.


Appendix M: Dimensioned Solar Charger Drawings Figure 66: Front and Side View of Charger Unit -18- .

Appendix N: Wind Turbine Hybrid Wiring Scheme Figure 67: Hybrid Array Wiring17 -19- .

Appendix O: Breaker Box Wiring Schematic Figure 68: Breaker Box Wiring Diagram22 -20- .

Appendix P: Detailed Budget and Cost Analysis Figure 69: Detailed Budget Showing Components Acquired on Build Trip. -21- . And Components Purchase on Subsequent Trips.

Manheim PA 17545 717. PA 16801 Bachelor of Sciences in Mechanical Engineering •Certificate of Community Service and Engineering •Current GPA: 3. and University of Technology Jamaica •Prepared water storage and solar pumping proposal for the Jamaican Bauxite Institute and the Prime Minister of Jamaica Honors Thesis Research Project September 2007 – Present Penn State University Park •Designed 1kW off-grid solar power system for charging electric vehicles in Jamaica •Charger constructed at Jacob’s Ladder in November 2008 American Indian Housing Initiative June 2007 Lame Deer.personal. Jamaica •Presented Penn State development plan to Prime Minister of Jamaica and MSC Founder •Traveled to MSC Jamaica three times to perform community assessments and thesis research •Public relations with Mustard Seed Communities (MSC) Penn State.ACADEMIC VITA ERIC MICHAEL SAUDER 1412 Landisville Road. Jamaican Bauxite Institute. MT • Participated in Design Build of Morningstar Montana Home SUSTAINABLE DESIGN EXPERIENCE -22- .” Jacob’s Ladder Penn State Development Team Leader September 2007 – Present Haddon.psu.519.9190 sauder@psu. •Thesis: “Development of an Appropriate Solar and Wind Hybrid Charging Station for Electric Vehicles in Developing ______________________________________________________________________________ EDUCATION The Pennsylvania State University Graduation: December 2008 University Park.0 Schreyer Honors College Scholar •Honors in Engineering Design.52/ www.

PA • Trained in basic operation of audio and lighting control boards • Set up weekly live stage audio components Eugene Forrey Woodworking .ADDITIONAL WORK EXPERIENCE TeamAg Inc. AutoCAD. Windows AWARDS • Humanitarian Engineering Community Engagement Award (April 2008) • College of Engineering Dean’s List (3/7 semesters) • George Settlemyer Fund for International Agriculture Experiences (April 2008) • Nominated for Lamarr Kopp International Achievement Award (December 2008) -23- . May 2007 .August 2007 Lancaster. PA • Site survey experience using Trimble Total Station 5700 • Worked with PA DEP and EPA to develop water certification documents • Met with farmers and performed site inspections United Campus Ministries August 2005 – December 2007 Penn State University Park • Ran leadership meetings and organized weekly group activities and projects • Planned two Gulf States Service Trips: 100+ students traveled to hurricane damaged coastal areas for week of service Lancaster County Bible Church . MS Office. Sketchup. Matlab. Solidworks.Audio and Lighting June 2006 Lancaster. Adobe CS3.Cabinet Maker May 2006 . PA ADDITIONAL SKILLS • Mac OS.August 2006 • Operated wood shop machinery • Led project teams to fill shop orders Lancaster.

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