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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 227960 Find in a Library
Title: Solar Hot Water System Installed in Philadelphia Prisons
Journal: Corrections Today  Volume:71  Issue:3  Dated:June 2009  Pages:68-71
Author(s): Robert Eskind
Date Published: June 2009
Page Count: 4
Type: Program/Project Description
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes the logistics of installing solar panels for water heating in one of Philadelphia’s jails, the energy-saving benefits of the new system, and energy-saving plans for the future.
Abstract: Philadelphia’s first jail-based solar panels for water heating were installed at Riverside Correctional Facility (RCF). It consists of 45 solar panels that heat 15 storage tanks, providing hot water for 768 inmates. Some 4 months later, plans for replicating the solar water heating system at RCF at the city’s largest jail, the Curran-Fromhold Correctional Facility (CFCF) were initiated. This project, which will require 15 months to complete will raise 248 solar panels to the roofs of CFCF’s 4 housing buildings, providing hot water to approximately 2,500 inmates. This article focuses on the background, construction, and effects of the prototype RCF solar hot water system. The idea for the new system was spurred by the recurring failures of the water heaters at RCF. U.S. Facilities, which held the maintenance contract for the jail, came to the Philadelphia Prisons Commissioner with a long-term solution that would save money and put RCF at the forefront of solar applications. U.S. Facilities provided the leadership for the development stages, and, along with the other project partners, brought the solar system to completion. Prior to installation of the solar system, RCF consumed between $4,000 per month (in the summer) and $34,000 per month (during the cold of winter) in natural gas, but not all of that went to produce hot water. Natural gas also fuels the facility’s heating system; and heat and hot water are on the same gas meter. The solar-panel system is expected to reduce the fuel used for hot water on average by 20 percent to 25 percent. 2 figures
Main Term(s): Correctional facility renovation
Index Term(s): Energy conservation; Energy requirements; Energy resources; Jail management; Jails; Pennsylvania
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