Listen to Your Library

Solar Power 101

Photo of solar panels
Solar Power 101 at Woods Memorial Branch Library on 10/12/11
  • An overview of solar basics — Tom Alston, Office of Congresswoman Giffords, Solar Outreach and Policy Coordinator
  • Solar trends and technology — Kevin Koch, Technicians for Sustainability, Owner Rooftop
  • Recent City of Tucson solar projects — Bruce Plenk, City of Tucson, Solar Energy Coordinator
  • Large commercial and community-scale solar — Valerie Rauluk, Venture Catalyst Inc.
  • Current trends in utility-scale solar — Nick Theisen, Solon Corporation, Service Territory Associate

Listen now (1:44:15)

Topics for (7/21/11)
  • Welcome and library resources - Dianna Thor, Manager, Dusenberry-River Branch Library
  • Financial incentives: an overview of the current local, state, and national incentives available for solar installation. The basics and different types of solar systems. - Tom Alson, Congresswoman Gabrielle Gifford's Office
  • Solar photovoltaic and the best practices for solar and photovoltaic installation. - Lon Huber, Technicians for Sustainability
  • Solar hot water: solar technology and an in-depth discussion about how to choose and finance a quality solar system. - Chad Waits, Southern Arizona Solar Standards Board

Listen now (1:14:20)

Topics for (03/24/11)
  • Welcome and Introduction - Elaine Ulrich, Office of Congresswoman Giffords
  • Library Resources - Dianna Thor, Manager, Dusenberry-River Branch Library
  • Smart, Clean and Ready to Go: How Solar hot Water Can Reduce Pollution and Dependence on Fossil Fuels - Bret Fanshaw, Environment Arizona
  • The Water Energy Connection - Asia Philbin, City of Tucson Water Services
  • The Basics of Solar PV and Solar Hot Water - Kevin Koch, Technicians for Sustainablity
  • Closing Remarks - Elaine Ulrich

Listen now (1:54:00)

Topics for (12/10/10)
  • Library Resources - Dianna Thor, Manager, Dusenberry-River Branch Library
  • Tucson Clean and Beautiful sustainability programs - B.J. Cordova, Tucson Clean and Beautiful
  • Energy efficiency for your home - Betsy Bolding, Tucson Electric Power
  • Investing in solar energy for your home - Brian Ziegle, American Solar Electric

Listen now (1:59:50)

Topics for (10/26/10)
  • Library Resources - Ruth Grant, Manager, Wheeler Taft Abbett, Sr. Branch Library
  • The Basics of Solar Photovoltaic (PV), including various types of residential installation. - Daniel Snyder, Westwind Solar Electric Inc.
  • The Basics of Solar Hot Water - Mike Kingsbury, Excel Mechanical Inc.
  • Green Homes 101 - Richard Franz-Under, Pima County Development Services

Listen now (1:25:50)

Topics for (06/15/10)
  • Arizona Solar Racing Team
    Wei Ren Ng and Sean Martinez provide an update of the University of Arizona Solar Race Car project.
  • Electric Vehicle Infrastructure in Tucson and Arizona
    Discussion with Susan Gray, Superintendent of Design/Build, Tucson Electric Power and Marc Sobelman, Area Manager of Arizona, eTec/ECOtality.
  • The Basics of Solar Photovoltaic and Hot Water
    Presented by Kevin Koch, Member, Technicians for Sustainability.

Listen now (1:58:00)

Topics for (04/27/10)
  • City of Tucson Office of Conservation and Sustainable Development
    Nicole Urban-Lopez gives an overview of the Green Business Certification program and other stimulus-funded programs.
  • Southern Arizona Green Chamber of Commerce
    Recently launched in Tucson, the SAGCC is quickly growing. SAGCC representative, John Brown, discusses what it's doing in the community for education and advocacy in sustainability.
  • Solar Gain
    A local installer, Melissa Black of Solar Gain, presents an overview of photovoltaic solar energy and solar hot water.
  • A short film of Congresswoman Gifford's home solar energy system installation.

Listen now (1:26:20)

Topics for (02/25/10)
  • Solar Path
    As a local installer, Solar Path presents an overview of residential photovoltaic solar energy system choices and installation steps.
  • Solar Energy International
    SEI is a non-profit educational organization that trains contractors to use renewable energy resources and sustainable building technologies. They spoke on the trainings they offer and national solar energy trends.
  • Town of Oro Valley
    Representatives from Oro Valley speak on how the town is moving ahead with solar energy, energy efficiency and conservation.
  • A short film of Congresswoman Gifford's home solar energy system installation.

Listen now (1:42:35)

Topics for (01/06/10)
  • PV Recycling
    Jennifer Woolwich, CEO of PV Recycling, LLC, presents on working with PV module manufacturersto develop take-back processes, manage module registries, oversee collection, perform testing and recycle modules.
  • Solar Energy Products
    Presented by Robert Wanless of Solon Corporation. Solon Corporation was established in Tucson in January 2007 to focus on manufacturing solar modules and systems for the North American market. Representatives from Solon give an overview of their products and projects, both in the Tucson area and globally.
  • Solar Power for the Home - Getting Started
    Considering the installation of solar equipment to your home? Sara H Rajca, staff member from the office of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, covers some basic information.

Listen now (1:27:28)

Topics for (12/09/09)
  • The Basics of Solar Hot Water and PV
    Joseph DiMatteo, Managing Partner of Sunpower of Arizona presents on the basics of solar hot water heaters and pool heating systems. He also elaborates on the cost breakdown for solar energy vs. electric or gas energy.
  • Utility Update
    Eddie Williams, Key Account Marketing Director at Trico Electric Cooperative presents on their initiatives in solar energy and their rebate program for residential and commercial PV and hot water.
  • Solar Power for the Home: Getting Started
    Sara Hummel Rajca of the Office of Congresswoman Giffords discusses the basics of solar energy residential systems.

Listen now (1:26:44)

Solar Power at the University of Arizona Presented by AzRISE
  • Learn about AzRISE, the Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy, based at the UA. It is involved with many solar research projects, including energy storage, large scale solar demonstration projects, solar energy teaching materials, upcoming events, and more.
  • Solar Decathlon & Solar Racing Team: The UA Solar Decathlon team and Solar Racing team presents information about their activities.
  • Dr. Alex Cronin: The UA physics professor presents information on his research on photovoltaics (PV) at the TEP solar testing yard, as well as his personal experiences with PV on his own home and how this has affected his life.

Listen now (1:21:57)

Topics for (04/16/09)
  • Solar at Davis-Monthan: A presentation on plans to install a large solar array at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (Margaret Bowman, DMAFB).
  • Utility-scale Solar: A presentation on current technologies, trends and issues (Jake Stephens, US Solar).
  • Commercial-scale Solar and Your Utility: A presentation on TEP's commercial solar program and Arizona's Renewable Energy Standard (Marc Romito, Tucson Electric Power).

Listen now (1:46:49)

Topics for (03/11/09)
  • Renewable energy aspects of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act 2009. (Tamarack Little, from the office of Representative Gabrielle Giffords)
  • Residential solar water heating, passive and active. (Katherine Kent, MS in Nuclear and Energy Engineering, President of the Solar Store)
  • Energy efficiency, small scale and large scale, and how large industrial energy users can conserve through design. (Mark Taylor, Westland Resources)

Listen now (1:49:42)

Topics for (02/17/09)
  • Residential Solar Electric: Includes installation procedures, photovoltaic technology and tax credits.
  • Solar Hot Water: Solar hot water for the home, including installation procedures, technology and rebates.
  • Rainwater Harvesting: How to collect rainwater for use on landscaping, gardens and other outdoor uses.
  • Federal Renewable Energy Update: An update on pending legislation by a member of Congresswoman Giffords' staff.

Listen now (1:52:58)

Local Solar Energy Programs
Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, a member of the House Science and Technology Committee, speak about the new solar tax credits and Arizona's potential as a national leader in solar energy. Other presentations include:
  • Trico's SunWatts Program - Learn how you can work with your local utility to save money on photovoltaic and solar hot water systems.
  • Marana's Green Building Program - Town of Marana Fellow Rebecca Kunsberg and Building Official John Huntley and will present plans for a new Green Building Program, and take comments and suggestions from the audience.
  • Solar Power for the Home: Getting Started - This is a presentation on the basics of financing and installing residential solar energy systems by a member of Congresswoman Giffords' staff.

Listen now (1:42:32)

The Potential of the Solar Industry
Solar-energy advocates Valerie Rauluk and Tom Alston speak about economic and technological opportunities and obstacles, as well as policy issues and hurdles.
Utilities and the Arizona Corporation Commission
This presentation was about statewide regulations currently being developed by the Arizona Corporation Commission that will dramatically affect the both the solar industry and utility companies in Arizona, featuring:
University of Arizona's Solar Research Program, AZRISE
A presentation about the new Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy, solar energy research at the University of Arizona, and the U of A Solar Decathlon Team, featuring Dr. Joe Simmons, Director of the Arizona Research Institute for Solar Energy, and Dale Clifford, U of A Solar Decathlon Team.
Solar America Initiative
A presentation about the City of Tucson's new grant from the U.S. Department of Energy to develop our solar energy infrastructure. An overview of the grant, a look at existing City of Tucson solar systems and plans for the implementation of the grant was discussed Doug Crockett, Energy Manager for the City of Tucson.
The Economics of Solar
A presentation about residential and commercial solar energy markets, tax credits, and important economic issues affecting Arizona
Solar Energy Technology
Pima County Website