An eastern-Pennsylvania company that manufactures industrial gases is installing solar panels at its headquarters and hopes to use solar energy to power half of its administrative buildings.

The Morning Call of Allentown reports that Trexlertown-based Air Products and Chemicals is installing hundreds of thin-film solar panels — manufactured by Air Products’ customers — as part of the nearly $9 million project. The company hopes to be cranking out 2 megawatts of energy by summer.

“We are going to produce power during some of the highest-priced power periods in the summer,” Steve Pastore, Air Products’ director of energy supply, told the newspaper. That will significantly reduce Air Products’ demand for power, while also cutting it energy costs, Pastore said.

The project, which uses thin-film solar cells produced by Air Products customers, also will reduce the company’s carbon dioxide emissions by about 2,000 tons a year, he said.

Air Products, which supplies oxygen and other gases to the industrial and medical sectors, created a separate solar products group about five years ago. Dave Tavianini, the company’s global photo-voltaic marketing manager, said the business has grown in each of the last five years.

“We saw that coming and we decided we need to focus on it as a market,” Tavianini said.

source: businessweek