uit de ruimte -
Solar panels on Earth out of space
all photographs Google Earth except where indicated
© TDN Emmen 1989, 31 Oost "Utrecht"
Jan Pieterszoon Coenstraat overview
J.P. Coenstraat centre
J.P. Coenstraat centre south
J.P. Coenstraat south
governmental market support for photovoltaics in the Netherlands
has dropped to a vehemently criticized "all-time-low",
while the rest of Europe is advancing fast with progressive support
"solar" based sustainable
technologies, we still encounter lots of small
scattered among the country. They could be considered as "relics"
of a golden mini-age in which the Netherlands temporarily took
the lead with the incorporation of solar-PV in the urban environment
through active market support regimes (see, e.g., the superb "Nieuwland"
project in Amersfoort on a separate
page). That lead
enhanced by thousands of civilians that took up the "Kyoto
and that, supported by a very attractive (but in the end uncontrollable
and badly-designed) financial incentive subsidy scheme for buying
solar panels, started their own "mini-PV plants". Lots
of people, some
30.000 households, have
small systems of 4 to 6, sometimes more (and in some areas up to
systems of 30) PV-modules and have started their private "solar
age" on their own (or rented) house or appartment.
an old district lying west of the centre of Utrecht, has always
rather social climate and people there have done a community effort
to get as much solar panels per house as possible for those interested
to participate in the joint effort. Because the people in this
area generally belong to households with not
much to spend, the average system size is approximately 4-6 modules,
although one can find also slightly bigger systems.
shows a few examples of the result of the cooperative efforts
of this old neighbourhood in Utrecht. An example to be followed
everywhere in the world, with financial backing of local and, in
particular, national governments that are looking for ways to reduce
greenhouse emissions, to create
sustainable market for solar energy based companies, and to bring
the people in society in contact with one of the most fascinating
and dark green energy technologies presently available on this
planet. It should be noted that feed-in regimes with good prices
for all kWh fed into the net has appeared to be the superior way
to take the market off, such has been shown in Germany and the
that follow its superb and well-designed Erneurbare Energien Gesetz
People with solar
panels on their roof do not get rich from solar power, but a financial
incentive is the difference between doing nothing at all and whining
about the exploding costs of the yearly energy bill on the
one hand, and highly motivated civilians producing part of their
own electricity consumption on the other. By
into contact with photovoltaic technology, it has been shown,
to become very critical of their own energy consumption as well.
A net-coupled Ferraris meter spinning backwards is one of the biggest
incentives to reduce wasteful electricity consumption habits
in the household! Hence, besides the financial benefits, because
of the adjusted "energy behaviour" of people generating
greenhouse emissions are reduced even further, accumulating positive
effects. It is also a very big incentive for people to become involved
highly needed support for the energy transition that starts to
take off in the Western world, and, hopefully, all around the globe
well. It will be the better for all mankind, and everyone can start
with a small system, even if it starts with one module only.
If one "gets the taste", one is inclined to buy more of these shiny
blue (or black) modules. Good for the economy, good for increase
in quality labour in the solar industry, good for reducing greenhouse
good for reducing extremely problematic NOx emissions from power
plants in populated countries, good for civic morale... Need I
(taken from: http://www.lombox.nl/zonnepanelen/bode.20_03_02.html)
duration: Februari 1, 2001 until December 31, 2001
250 PV-modules on dwellings of house owners and
Shell Solar 95 Wp (ACN2000E; datasheet: 93 Wp) and some "lucky ones"
104 Wp (RSM105).
Type of system: Sunpower® mounted on plastic "Ecofys-consoles" (now
from Ubbink) or integrated in slanted roofs.
pictures, south is always at the bottom of the photographs (unless
At the time that these photographs
were taken, sun location was in the SE (watch shadows).
of Lombok in
Emmen 1989, 31 Oost "Utrecht"
part of Tasmanstraat.
Two PV-systems on flat roofs, both consisting of 12 modules,
and having a slightly different orientation with respect
These kind of flat-roof systems mostly are placed on so-called "consoles",
plastic supports on which the modules can be fixed, and
that are filled with stone tiles, pebbles, etc., to make
storm-proof (hence: the consoles are not fixed to the roof
and they can easily be removed if the owner moves to another
house). In other flat-roof systems open frame supports have
aluminium profiles (see, e.g., system
of webmaster of Polder PV).
showing 4 different PV-systems, all on flat roofs. Anti-clockwise
from top left: 12 modules in 3 rows,
4 modules in a single row (bottom), 8 modules in two rows
(lower right) and, finally, 14 modules on flat roof section
a small superstructure and a daylight-window (top right).
Note shading of one of the modules of the latter system by
the superstructure, and the
single modules placed on the eastern rim of this roof section,
well placed apart to prevent the most southerly module from
shading its northern neighbour in winter (sun positioned
low in the sky). Hence: 4 most probably happy households
producing a very sustainable part of their
own electricity consumption.
households (red arrows) in two facing blocks of houses in
Pieterszoon Coenstraat (northern part)! All
flat roof systems, part on separate top floor superstructures.
detail photographs, see below.
1 of J.P.
Coenstraat, northern part of previous photograph.
From top left, counterclockwise: 4 modules placed separately
in alternating "rows", 4 modules in 2 rows, 8 modules in 4
rows each with 2 modules (bottom left), 4 modules in 2
rows on, presumably, asphalt paper
roof (bottom right), 4 modules in 3 rows on small superstructure
with dark gray cover, system with 4 modules including one
in SW direction (experiment or accident??), and, finally, in
upper right corner, system with 8 modules in 3 rows.
2 of J.P. Coenstraat,
southern part of overview photograph. Houses at left: 4 modules
in 2 rows in centre left, most probably a double solar thermal collector
on adjacent house (note large shadow), and
10 modules in 2 rows at bottom. Note probable cabling in
of the front
row. Houses at right: 4 loose PV modules on roof superstructure
at top, and 4 modules in 2 rows in upper right-hand corner of adjacent
3 of J.P. Coenstraat,
southern part of this PV-filled street. Very interesting arrays.
Top to bottom: 8 rather loosely placed modules apparently
consisting of 2 different types; system of 4 modules in single
with a dormer (Dutch: "dakkapel") at left
with 4 modules cramped on the flat roof. And, finally, the
a single house with at the left side a dormer with 4 S. facing
modules as on the neighbouring house, 6 modules on the slanted roof
facing W., and on the east-facing part of the slanted roof
half again a big dormer with 8 S. facing modules in 4 rows.
for this single house, that shares its (slanted) roof with
neighbouring house with 4 modules. Photograph of this system
has also been published in Bode (O.D.E.)/november 2006.
Leidsekade on S. rim of Lombok district, revealing a system
with 4 modules placed in a square on the SSE facing slanted roof
of a big building (app. 3 houses under one roof), bottom right,
and two modules on slanted roof on top, shaded by a tree.
Leidsekade/Billitonkade on N. bank Merwedekanaal (3
out of 4 boats). How Dutch can you get? Living "on the
water", a small
a good sunny
breakfast, and, off-course, with an array of solar panels
on the flat roof of
2x 16 solar panels
on two neighbouring houseboats in big picture, and 12 modules on
smaller houseboat (lying east of previous two), in inset. See also
overview on separate page.
Leidsekade, showing off a PV-system with 10 modules in 4 separate
rows on flat roof. Such a system could, in theory, if consisting
of 100 Wp modules, produce under average conditions in the
Netherlands app. 800 kWh/year of superclean, emission- and noise-free
electricity and offset the electricity bill of an average household
(consuming app. 3.500 kWh/year) with almost a quarter. Note also
the 4-module system on a slanted roof in the lower left corner.
Website of the
community center of Lombok (Dutch):
in Lombok (Dutch):
to main Google Earth photopage (PV-projects)