PSU Logo

Community Solar on State


Jeffrey Brownson,

About the Project

Community Solar on State: A Living Laboratory Framework for Outreach, Education, and Research was funded by Penn State's Sustainability Institute's Reinvention Fund at the University Park campus in the amount of $56,250.

Penn State has a strong interest and passion for solar energy research and development, supported by a community interest to expand local renewable energy production.

The project team plans to create an outreach and educational process to enable a community PV project, a “solar garden”, retain the best practices learned, and then move forward with enabling prospective solar projects as they evolve in the future. 

This project serves an important role to bind together and document a transformational approach to growing a culture of solar farming as a community supported effort, embracing the role of our land grant institution as the Depression-resilient “Happy Valley” to serve the people of the Commonwealth. 

Design and Planning Workshop

When: August 23, 2014, 9am-4:45pm
Where: Park Forest Elementary School
Why: This workshop is to 
initiate the development of community-created PV-generated energy sources in Happy Valley in a way that deeply values the role of all stakeholders in a collaborative and transparent co-creative process so that all stakeholders enthusiastically participate in enriching and improving the unique quality of life in this particular community indefinitely.

Lunch will be provided to invited and accepted participants. Please RSVP to Prof. Brownson by Tuesday, August 19.

Project Plans

  • Document and export the integrative design process as best practices in developing community solar PV systems
  • Success will lead to a large base of community solar owners and the opportunity to grow and expand our PV projects to include innovation that again signals Penn State as a national energy leader, as well as a leader in sustainability.
  • As Penn State is a part of its own community, OPP will be purchasing the produced PV power and a share of the Renewable Energy Credits along with the community members and PSU Alumni.