Study: Zoo Carousel
Solar helps make the old new again....
Woodland Park Zoo's historic carousel was donated by Linda and Tom Allen of the Alleniana Foundation in 2000.
The historic carousel, originally built in 1918, and its 48 classic, hand-carved wooden carousel horses were lovingly restored. The structure was the 45th carousel constructed by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company, who employed master-carver John Zalar to produce the horses. The horses alone are considered rare and valuable American artifacts, which zoo officials refer to as "an endangered species."
As a result, aesthetics were a very important consideration for this project. Our roof crew made a point of limiting roof penetrations, while our electricians went the extra mile in hiding and painting their conduits. Initially, the zoo administration's goal for the PV array was to off-set the operating costs for the carousel motor. To that end, we installed 48 195 watt Silicon Energy modules with paired 4.2.2 inverters. The 9.36kW system produces roughly 9400 kwhs of electricity per year. In late 2013 the zoo replaced some 1400 16W incandescent lights with LED’s.
Now the PV system powers the entire carousel, lights and motor. The system doubles as a high visibility educational tool for the public, and uses Fat Spaniel data monitoring. Of the more than 5,000 wooden carousel's originall built, PTC #45 is one of only 150 operating today.