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NMSU program at Corona focuses on solar water pumping, off-grid lighting

CORONA, N.M. – In New Mexico, remote ranches may not have ready access to electricity but almost always have access to abundant solar energy. So, how do you get from a sunny day to a usable solar electric system?

Participants will be able to get answers about solar water pumping and off-grid lighting during the Wednesday, April 29, Beyond the Roundtable program at New Mexico State University’s Southwest Center for Rangeland Sustainability in Corona.

“Ranches and other agricultural operations need to be efficient in managing their costs however possible,” said Shad Cox, superintendent of NMSU’s Corona Range and Livestock Research Center. “Experts at this program will give practical guidance on using solar energy as a power source – from solar electric system design to available cost shares and grants for installation costs.”

The program will begin at 10 a.m. with a session on the basics of solar electric systems by Thomas Jenkins, professor of engineering technology with NMSU’s Engineering New Mexico Resources Network.

Stirling Spencer of Bartz-Spencer Solar LLC will speak at 10:30 a.m. on water pumping design, installation and costs.

Lunch will be provided at noon.

At 1 p.m., Jenkins will discuss off-grid lighting, followed at 1:45 p.m. by a description of available publications and tools from the Engineering New Mexico Resources Network and NMSU’s Cooperative Extension Service.

A discussion of available cost shares and grants for installation from the U.S. Department of Agriculture will be at 2:30 p.m.

A roundtable discussion and case studies of solar applications will be at 3 p.m.

Registration is free but limited to the first 45 participants.

Register online at www.corona.nmsu.edu. For more information, contact Shad Cox at 575-849-1015 or shadcox@nmsu.edu. For directions to the center, visit the Corona Range and Livestock Research Center’s website at www.coronasc.nmsu.edu.