Artwork Conversion Software Goes Solar

For Immediate Release

May 11, 2001

Santa Cruz, CA - Artwork Conversion Software, a Santa Cruz based developer of software, has gone solar - it signed a contract with EcoEnergies of Sunnyvale to install a 2 kilowatt photovoltaic array on the roof of the company's Westside building.

When completed later this summer, the 24 solar panels should provide about 50% of Artwork's power requirements during summer afternoons when the likelihood of rolling blackouts is highest. A bank of batteries will provide sufficient storage to keep the company running for 6-8 hours should a blackout last that long.

During the weekends, when the company's power usage is low, the solar panels will supply power back to the PG&E grid, spinning Artwork's meter backwards.

According to Steve DiBartolomeo, president of Artwork, the decision to go this way was easy.

    "For some years I have wanted to take advantage of solar energy, but the economics made it hard to justify. However the loss of business associated with blackouts made a backup system necessary and since a large backup system and a solar system share many of the same components we decided to go solar.

    It's typically a long payback as these systems have a high up front cost. But if electricity rates continue to rise as they have in the last year our payback will come a lot sooner. Should energy costs really rise, we can double the solar capacity merely by adding panels as the inverter and other components can handle the additional load."

Artwork is taking additional measures to reduce energy consumption. A reflective film is being applied to all south facing windows to reduce the heat gain on that side of the building. Each desk is being equipped with a small high intensity 13W fluorescent lamp in order to reduce overhead lighting. A duct with a small fan is being installed to pull cooler air from downstairs to the upstairs - this should delay the number of hours the air conditioning unit runs during the summer.

For more information contact: Steve DiBartolomeo, 831 426-6163.